EAGLE EYE DECEMBER 2018
INSIDE • THE NEW ECOLLECT: Humming to a street near you • PANDA WASTE: Panda’s thriving with help from Dennis Eagle • CHECK MATES: Why PDI is the final move that wins the game
...COMING IN 2019
100 ELECTRIC %
0 EMISSIONS %
Coming in 2019, the eCollect fully-electric RCV is our latest; and one of our most exciting innovations. Retaining the familiar vehicle design our users know and love, eCollect brings the environmental and economic benefits offered by electric power to a vehicle that doesnâ€™t compromise on its ability to work. Register your interest at:
Dennis Eagle Ltd. Heathcote Industrial Estate, Warwick CV34 6TE 01926 458 500
CONTENTS EDITOR Adele Pearl firstname.lastname@example.org
PHOTOGRAPHY Tim Wallace email@example.com Shaun Mallen firstname.lastname@example.org
Spare parts at the touch of a button
Oh I do like to be beside the seaside
The Simply successful way with waste
How do you make a bin...lift?
To begin at the beginning: Blackpool
S. Walsh & Sons bring clear view to tunnel vision
Turning direct vision into reality
Panda’s sustainable success story
Keeping your fleet moving
New vehicles in service at Northumberland
A perfect marriage
Extending our aftermarket offer in Leeds
Terberg Matec UK ‘Omni’ range of bin lifts
Leading the charge
Putting our vehicles to the test in Eastleigh
Are you connected?
Terberg deals with weighty matters
ProView hits the road in the USA
The Fab Five
JJ’s amazing coats of colour
Supplier focus - Granlyn Specialist Coatings Ltd
DESIGN Jask Creative jaskcreative.co.uk
Front cover: Charlotte Finlayson - a secondyear Heavy Goods Vehicle apprentice at our Falkirk Service Centre in Scotland. Charlotte hopes to become a Field Service Engineer after finishing her apprenticeship.
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FOREWORD Hello and welcome to Eagle Eye. 2018 has proved to be another busy year for Dennis Eagle and Terberg Matec UK operations. Things show no sign of slowing down, despite current uncertainties regarding the outcome of the UK’s exit from the European Union next March. Reflecting on the factors that have contributed to our past and current success, three things stand out: innovation, investment and people. All intrinsically linked, these combine to create a blueprint for the ongoing growth and development of the business. Innovation is the lifeblood of the company and throughout our history we have been committed to anticipating the future challenges our customers will face and creating solutions to meet these. The latest example of this is our eCollect electric vehicle. Offering a more environmentally friendly refuse collection solution with affordable lifetime costs, it is designed to help deliver zero emission waste collection and transportation across the industry. Scheduled to go into production in 2019, it is the result of years of research and development and we have invested heavily in the project to bring it to fruition, utilising new and emerging technologies to create a fullyintegrated solution. Our infrastructure is another area in which we continue to invest. This year has seen major projects undertaken at our Warwick and Blackpool manufacturing facilities. At many of our sites we have taken the opportunity to replace our existing lighting with new, more efficient, next-generation LED systems. These help to lower our carbon footprint, simplify maintenance and reduce associated costs.
We have also relocated our Leeds Service Centre to a new, larger site at Gildersome Spur. This includes a custom-fitted, stateof-the-art workshop area, as well as a parts warehouse, training conference room, separate offices and main reception area. Providing us with greater capacity, it is now enabling us to deliver an enhanced service to customers in the region. Going back to my original point about the factors contributing to our success, none of this innovation or investment would be possible without our people. Although we are a product manufacturer, it’s essentially people who drive our business forward. We have a dedicated and highly-skilled team, including manufacturing, sales and aftermarket personnel, office-based staff and research and development engineers. All of them play an important role in helping us meet demand for our products and services. They also enable us to innovate and develop new solutions for the waste and recycling industry, and meet all the latest compliance and regulatory requirements. However, our customers are the backbone of our business. Without them, none of this would be possible. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank our long-standing clients for their continued loyalty and welcome newer ones. We look forward to working with you all over the coming months and years to supply products and solutions that deliver on value, efficiency and performance. I hope you enjoy reading this issue. If there’s anything we can help you with or if there’s anything you’d like to see featured in the next edition, please get in touch.
KEVIN ELSE Managing Director
SPARE PARTS AT THE TOUCH OF A BUTTON
“Availability is essential – we have around 13,000 lines in stock at our Chorley distribution centre with a first-time pick rate of 99%”
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“The only certainties in this world are death and taxes,” according to American inventor Benjamin Franklin. Of course, if he’d been a fleet manager he’d have added vehicle breakdowns to that list. It’s inevitable: frontline RCVs get damaged and parts wear out. But when they do, they need fixing as quickly as possible. Without doubt, the biggest contribution to speeding up RCV repairs has been the invention of the internet – not one of Franklin’s, but one he’d certainly have approved of. More specifically, it’s the way we use the internet to identify and order spare parts that has reduced vehicle downtime. And Dennis Eagle has blazed the trail for this in the waste management sector with our Electronic Parts Catalogue (EPC). It was first launched way back in 2003 and we were the first RCV manufacturer to offer a fully integrated service of this kind, covering every part for every vehicle rolling off the production line. Since then it’s evolved beyond recognition to become a highly-intuitive, user-friendly website that helps customers to quickly and confidently identify and order spare parts. Whether you use a PC, tablet or smartphone, it’s available 24/7 so you don’t have to wait for the stores to open before placing an order. And it also reduces the chance of ordering the wrong part too. Central Parts Manager Jaz Arak explained: “Customers just enter the registration number of their vehicle and the system will pull up its exact specification with technical drawings highlighting its different components. People like the fact they can see the parts diagrammatically – it’s reassuring. “They can identify the part they want by its unique part number and see the price at the
same time. Sometimes they call us just to make sure they’ve got it right but the system actually enables them to generate a pdf and send it instantly to their own garage at the click of a button. Then their own fitters can verify it. “Of course, if anyone ever needs any help getting started with the EPC, they only have to ask – we’ll be delighted to help them.” However, the EPC does more than make it quicker and easier for customers to order spares. It plays a vital and intelligent role in managing stock levels too – and availability is essential. “We have around 13,000 lines in stock at our Chorley distribution centre with a first-time pick rate of 99 per cent. The EPC uses a traffic light system to show customers if stock is running low but we also have a sophisticated forecasting tool based on many years of data that helps to anticipate trends at key times of the year. “During winter, for example, there is a higher demand for parts that are exposed to the elements or heat-related components, such as engine thermostats. Summer brings its own challenges. The long heatwave of 2018 led to a greater use of air conditioning units but we were able to increase our stock of related parts.” The EPC also lets customers create a list of their most frequently ordered parts or a customised list of all their vehicles. This provides them with total visibility of their fleet at the click of a button so they don’t have to search for vehicles or parts individually.
“Once an order is received, items are picked, packed and dispatched,” said Jaz. “Same-day delivery can be arranged and for orders placed before 6pm we offer next-day delivery options too. Alternatively, items can be collected the same day from our Chorley base. “The numbers of people ordering spares via the EPC continues to grow quickly but we still have a telephone ordering service which handles about 5,000 calls a month. There will always be those who prefer that communication channel and we’re here to make it as easy as possible for everyone.”
And the system allows documents relating to specific parts, such as Service Bulletins or data sheets, to be uploaded so customers have all the information they need in one place.
Swansea Council has been using the EPC for more than 10 years and Fleet Manager Mark Barrow was in no doubt why: “We have simply found it indispensable,” he said. “The customised fleet listing and easily accessible parts graphics really help both purchasing and workshop staff ensure they get the right part first time. “Ordering is simple, with part-pricing, availability and dispatch status made totally clear. It couldn’t be easier.
Parts are easy to identify using our EPC system
“Other manufacturers in our sector would do well to learn from this intelligent approach.”
OH I DO LIKE TO BE BESIDE THE SEASIDE
Waste management company, Paper Round, kindly provided the vehicles for racing On Friday 15 June and Saturday 16 June, Weston-super-Mare hosted the second annual National Refuse Championships (NRC). The charity event is the brainchild of Spencer Law from Refuse Vehicle Solutions Ltd, a regular customer of Dennis Eagle, and this year over £20k was raised for Alzheimer’s Society, nearly double last year’s total. Spencer commented: “I’m overwhelmed with how well it went and I’m so grateful to everyone who took part – the staff, the sponsors, the exhibitors, the teams and of course all the spectators. The event was bigger than last year, with a lot more teams taking part, and I can see it growing every year. We’ve already had enquiries from local authorities who wish to enter teams next year and I’m
delighted to announce that the National Refuse Championships 2019 will take place at Westonsuper-Mare on Friday 14th & Saturday 15th June.” The NRC kicked off on Friday 15 June with an exhibition and seminar programme featuring well-known names in the waste management industry, including the City of London, CIWM and Simply Waste Solutions. In the afternoon pupils from local primary schools visited and took part in their own ‘Recycling Races’. The children loved seeing the vehicles up close and were especially delighted with all the giveaways they received from exhibitors.
Let the races begin Day two of theChampionships was the main event with over 30 teams competing in heats, two at a time, representing many different parts of the UK including Aberdeenshire, Swansea and London. Dennis Eagle also entered a team with Johnny McGonigle, Matt Wright, Tom Poland, Jamie Dyker and Todd Udale, from Production. Around 15 teams went through to the knockout round (including Dennis Eagle!) and the races continued into the afternoon until only two teams remained – Grist Environmental and the local team Biffa (Weston).
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Spencer Law and Tracy Standing from RVS
“What a fantastic event! I took the whole family along and we all had a great time. It’s a perfect opportunity for team building and looks set to become a welcome, regular fixture on the waste management calendar. I was especially pleased, but not surprised, that the Dennis vehicles achieved the quickest times too!” Richard Taylor, Sales & Marketing Director, Dennis Eagle
‘Fun’ Race Before the final race a ‘fun’ race took place between RVS staff and a second team from Dennis Eagle with Ben Hoadley, Adam Robins, Tom Sperrink, Charlie Everitt and Simon McCulloch from the Sales & Marketing team. It was a closely fought contest but in the end Team RVS beat the Dennis crew to the finish line. Ben Hoadley, Regional Sales Manager, Dennis Eagle: “The NRC is one of those
events that brings everyone in the waste industry together. It’s great for team building and we all enjoyed spending time with colleagues from other parts of the business. “Well done the production team for getting through to the knockout round! “As for our fun race, we got off to a great start, until I stopped short of the allocated box that is! RVS made a few mistakes too so we caught up, but only to then lose the race. I can’t wait until next year.”
More than £21k raised for Alzheimer’s Society
Winners Grist Environmental (L) and runners up Biffa (Weston)
And the national refuse champions 2018 are… ….Grist Environmental from Devizes, Wiltshire!
I think it’s certainly the best team event our company has ever experienced. “
The Grist team were determined to remain unbeaten throughout the whole competition after narrowly missing the top slot in 2017, when Aylesbury Vale were crowned the winners.
The Biffa (Weston) team members were very gracious runners-up and were each presented with £250 worth of Buy-A-Gift vouchers.
Each team member was presented with vouchers for a Center Parcs holiday with their families. Marcus Grist, Events Director, Grist Environmental and Team Captain/Driver: “We are over the moon to have won the title. The trophy will take pride of place in reception at our head office along with some pictures of the day. It was brilliant and all the staff are buzzing. People keep congratulating us and the directors of the company, including my father, are very proud. One of the team said that it was his biggest achievement in over 15 years of working with refuse vehicles and
Mike Riordan, Loader: “I took part last year and injured my hamstring in the first race but carried on anyway. No problems this year thankfully! The event is bigger and busier this year. It’s a great day and we’re really competitive so we are delighted to have achieved second place.” Cartwrights Waste Disposal Services took the third place and were rewarded with £200 worth of Buy-A-Gift vouchers each. Michael Dent, Director of Fundraising at Alzheimer’s Society said a few words at the event and was accompanied by a volunteer, Alan Hawthorne.
Michael Dent, the Alzheimer’s Society Director of Fundraising, paid tribute to the efforts of the organisers and fundraisers for raising more than £21,000. Laura Hewitt, Community Fundraiser for Alzheimer’s Society, said: “We’re overwhelmed by the amount of money that has been raised. I’d like to thank the organisers, the teams who took park in the races with such competitive spirit and those that contributed and made a donation on the day. The atmosphere was fantastic. It was great to see so many people, including many families, watching the competition unfold. Dementia is set to be the 21st century’s biggest killer and affect one million people in the UK by 2021. Events like this help us raise awareness as well as money to find a cure, improve care and offer help and understanding for people affected by dementia.”
SAVE THE DATE! The National Refuse Championships 2019 - Friday 14 June & Saturday 15 June 2019 For more information visit nationalrefusechampionships.co.uk or contact Tracy Standing, Event Organiser on T: 01453 899131
THE SIMPLY SUCCESSFUL WAY WITH WASTE
Staff from across the Simply Waste team provide input into which vehicles to buy. So far, they’ve backed Dennis Eagle RCV’s
Simply Waste Solutions is one of the UK’s largest independently owned waste management companies. The business, established by CEO James Capel, started from humble beginnings back in 2006 and has been working alongside the team at Dennis Eagle since 2014. Beginning their operations across London, they have grown from a small team with only two vehicles (both of which were Dennis Eagle Elite models) to a fleet that’s now more than 50 strong. After collecting over 125,000 tonnes of waste and recycling in 2017 alone, the company is forecasting a turnover of £32 million this financial year – all in the space of 12 years! The story behind Simply Waste is impressive. James first made the decision to start the business when he was working for a large national company based in the same sector. His experience in the industry, alongside a driven belief that he could improve efficiencies in waste collection, set James on his way.
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It was not long before James had purchased two second-hand refuse collection vehicles and assembled a small team to begin Simply Waste Solutions. After evaluating the services on offer in the region, James realised that there wasn’t a strong privately owned waste contractor available, and so decided to start there. Successes have come from the hard work and determination in London and Simply Waste has since grown year after year. Today, in their 12th year of trade, the business operates across three sites with more than 200 staff, and between them, the Simply Waste team made almost one million site visits in 2017 alone. In some respects 2017 was a landmark year for Simply Waste. After a year which had seen the company empty more than one million wheeled bins and collect almost one million bags of refuse, Simply Waste can now legitimately describe themselves as one of the UK’s largest waste management companies.
However, their most impressive accolade from 2017 was their 99.1% service success. This is no mean feat, especially considering their operation is in the London market. As James explained: “In London, our service delivery has to be spot on. We have high expectations for our own service operations here.” “Although waste collection services are at the forefront of our business, it’s not our only service. We’re not just collecting your residual waste for power generation. We have one of the largest fleets of food waste collection vehicles in London and this is on top of glass, cardboard and paper, wood, paper cups and plastics collections.” Operating on the busy streets of London is not the only area that Simply Waste are focused on. In the last 18 months the business has purchased three other waste collection businesses with operations in other areas.
“The quality of the vehicles and competitive price were how we were first drawn into the Dennis Eagle range.”
Simply Waste’s CEO James Capel started the company in 2006 with just two Dennis Eagle vehicles. Now he has more than 50 “At the beginning of the year, we bought a business in Oxford so we now have an established base there. Our high standards for service delivery will carry over to the west meaning our customers in Oxfordshire will benefit from the methods we’ve developed working here in London. The plan for the company from here is to continue looking for expansion opportunities, steadily growing our geographical area of operations.” Currently, Simply Waste operate exclusively in the UK. However, this isn’t to say James hasn’t considered the possibility of future expansion overseas. “I spend some time every year in Florida and the US waste market does interest me. In my opinion, they are quite a long way behind where we are in the UK. It’s an interesting market which presents big opportunities for when the time is right.” For now, Simply Waste will continue to grow both organically and through acquisitions in the UK with Dennis Eagle supporting their every move. Aside from starting the company with Dennis Eagle vehicles, James has continued to develop the business with a fleet of reliable vehicles, all of which are currently associated with the Dennis Eagle brand. After spending a number of years trialling new suppliers, James realised he wasn’t getting the right vehicle support he needed to improve the services of Simply Waste.
James Capel and Dennis Eagle’s Regional Sales Manager Ben Hoadley have forged a strong relationship In 2014, with a fleet in need of upgrading, James approached Dennis Eagle. It was through a carefully constructed vehicle plan that the Dennis Eagle and Simply Waste relationship began. James explained why Dennis Eagle are integral to the success of Simply Waste: “The equipment we select has to be extremely robust and has to stand up to the demands, potentially, of a 22 hour shift each day. Obviously, we do make time for maintenance but we need that to be at a minimum.
“The quality of the vehicles and competitive price were how we were first drawn into the Dennis Eagle range. What’s really important to us is the back-up as well. The availability of parts and response time to problems is essential to our continued smooth running. “For lack of a better phrase, the wheels cannot stop turning. Customers are continually producing waste. Some of our clients are producing two collections a day (even three for some) so as you can imagine, there’s no breathing space for us.”
Simply Waste Service Manager Desmond Matemura puts an Olympus body and Beta bin lift through its paces
“What I also like is the fact that Dennis Eagle vehicles are British-made, creating employment just an hour-and-a-half up the road from us, which is a great story, I think.” Simply Waste has positioned itself to offer waste management services across a range of sectors instead of focusing heavily in one market. The thinking behind this is quite simply that “everybody is producing waste”. With clients such as the National History Museum, King’s College London and the UK’s popular peri-peri chicken chain Nandos, it’s clear that James’ vehicles need to be ready for just about anything. The breadth of refuse that is produced by Simply Waste’s customers is something that suits their collection infrastructure. James is proud to be able to collect a variety of waste types, ranging from general waste and cardboard to food waste and glass. “The mainstay of our fleet consists of 35 Refuse Collection Vehicles, most being the standard vehicle size of a 6x2 chassis with the Dennis Eagle Olympus 21 body and a Beta 2 lip lift. To ensure we’re making the
E AG L E E Y E
correct product decisions, we speak to various people in our business. Everyone from our drivers, fleet controller, service controllers and operation managers are involved in providing input towards the final procurement decision. “It’s not all down to cost either. The product’s robustness, reliability, back-up and also lead times on new vehicles (as we’re growing so quickly) are all considered. “Service delivery is our key. So many people rely on our collection service and we have an excellent success rate. Our customers in London, and particularly our clients in hospitality, can’t afford to have waste lying around. It can interfere with their ability to do their job and raises additional concerns, such as environmental health. “We’re a family-owned business and it’s important that we are able to offer a level of flexibility within the marketplace through our wide range of services.” Turnover has doubled for Simply Waste since 2014, the year which Dennis Eagle vehicle bodies were introduced to James’s fleet.
Developments to the Simply Waste fleet haven’t stopped there either. The business is currently in the process of upgrading their Euro 5 fleet to Euro 6 models in preparation for London’s introduction of an ‘Ultra Low Emission Zone’ - set to take place in April 2019. It’s because of this that Dennis Eagle have a representative on hand to help guide James through the fleet management process. Ben Hoadley, Regional Sales Manager for Dennis Eagle says of his ongoing relationship with James and Simply Waste: “I started my role at Dennis Eagle in 2014, and one of my first visits as Regional Sales Manager was to Simply Waste. I’m really pleased to see that the relationship has grown from strength to strength since then. James and the team do an excellent job and it’s brilliant to see how our vehicles help make this possible. “It’s not just their day-to-day operations that impress me either. James is a huge advocate for recycling and bettering the standards of waste collection in any way he can. His innovative efforts in other areas, such as
recyclable cups and the work the business does for charity, is what makes them such a joy to work with.” James recounts how Simply Waste held a black tie charity ball in the grounds at the Tower of London. Originally organised to mark the 10th anniversary of Simply Waste, James quickly realised the event could become so much more. “We had 400 people attend the charity ball in 2016 as a thank-you to our employees, customers and our suppliers for helping us get to that point and making the business a success. “At the same time, we wanted to raise money for charity. We held a series of events outside of the main ball and raised some money on the night too. During that year we raised £29,000 for our partnered charity ‘Shooting Star Chase’ children’s hospice, whom we’ve had a long standing relationship with since 2015.
“The donations acquired have helped the hospice care for young people, children and babies with life-limiting conditions and have further helped support their families. “This year, we thought why not do it again? So, in July 2018 we held our second charity ball. The Tower of London was the location and again we invited everyone from customers to employees and even had key stakeholders in the industry attend, including a local MP.
“We raised £29,000 for our partnered charity ‘Shooting Star Chase’ children’s hospice” On the evening of this year’s charity ball, Simply Waste raised another £13,000. Again, ‘Shooting Stars Chase’ were the ones to receive this generous donation and James plans to keep hosting these events that have previously been such a hit with everyone involved.
“Shooting Stars Chase is a charity close to my heart, and we only hope to continue helping them in every way we can. We actually have two vehicles on our fleet that are promoting the charity with decals that include their name and logo. Alongside this we’d like to keep hosting events like the charity ball. “Although we host it and put it together, it has become a bit of an industry event that brings together lots of people as well as our customers and employees. On the relationship with Dennis Eagle, James believes this is only set to continue, becoming a long-standing alliance in the waste industry sector. “We’re particularly interested in the electric RCV that Dennis Eagle has recently developed - the ‘eCollect’. I think that’s one way for the industry to go and we’re keen to keep tabs on it as we look to demo the model in the near future.” And so, electric or not, the future of this blossoming relationship looks simply positive.
Simply Waste’s operations cover a broad spectrum of commercial waste
HOW DO YOU MAKE A BIN... LIFT?
Rob ‘Bembo’ Bremridge
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What were you doing in 1990? To jog your memory, it was the year Tim Berners-Lee proposed the World Wide Web, Homer Simpson was ‘born’, Margaret Thatcher resigned, Gazza cried, Rob ‘Bembo’ Bremridge joined Dennis Eagle and Spurs – with star striker Gary Lineker – were tipped for the title… but finished third. And Dennis Eagle’s Beta bin lift was a twinkle in the eye of our engineers. Twenty-eight years later, the world’s a different place but best of the ’90s is still thriving. The Beta bin lift is as popular as it ever has been – you can check it out on the World Wide Web, Homer is a household name, Bembo’s enjoying life and work to the full and, at the time of going to print, his beloved Spurs – with star striker Harry Kane – were being tipped for the title… “It does have a familiar ring,” confirmed Bembo. “But the fine details have changed. I’m back working on the Beta 2 bin lifts as a Production Co-ordinator having worked in almost every part of the factory. But it’s very different from when I started here 28 years ago as a fitter/ welder. “I’d learned the trade as a mechanic at a garage in Barford, near Warwick. My family had run it since 1927. So I was used to getting my hands dirty and I still am. I’ve got a 1973 TR6 – made up the road in Coventry – that always needs something doing to it.
Lighting plays a key role in safety too. Not only is the Beta 2’s lighting fully compliant with UK traffic regulations – with outline marker lights, high level lights and number plate lights – but strobe and rotating beacons are available too. Optional light guards can be fitted. And a joystick helps positioning heavy wheeled bins safely and efficiently – no rush, no risk. Another key selling point is that Beta 2s are up to 30% lighter than most conventional split-bin lifts because they do not need an adaptor frame. And the relatively short rear overhang reduces the load on the rear axle, giving operators a significant payload advantage. “Because it is so simple there’s not a lot to go wrong and when something does get broken, it’s quick and easy to fix,” explained Bembo. “When something is as tried-and-tested as the Beta 2, any wrinkles have been ironed out a long time ago. It is hugely reliable. “Biffa uses them a lot in its industrial operations and Veolia too – in fact lots of private contractors of all sizes. But local authorities that still operate collections themselves love them too. “One of the reasons for that is because they are designed to complement the popular Olympus bodies. The Beta 2 just bolts on to the back of them in about 30 minutes – which is a lot quicker and easier than it used to be. That’s probably what’s changed most in my time here.
“We used to have to weld the bin lifts on to the back of the vehicle. I remember when I started doing it there was a bit of trial and error. Now we just put it together in a jig and bolt it on to the tailgate. “And in the old days we used to put everything together in bays. Today’s production techniques are all about quality and efficiency. Working on a line is so much quicker and more reliable. We used to produce 10 or 11 a week working weekends too. Now we typically produce 25 in a 36-hour-week. “The engineers will explain what’s needed and we get on and do it,” said Bembo. “But it works both ways. If we think a component would be better moved 60mm that way, we’ll explain it to the engineers and – if they agree – they’ll make that modification. It’s just good people engaging in good teamwork.” And talking of teams, Bembo’s already got his season ticket for Spurs’ new White Hart Lane ground which, at the time of going to press, was nearing completion. “I’ve been a season ticket holder for 26 years. My mate and I worked out we’ve each spent more than £50,000 supporting them in that time!”
“And the Beta lift, in its own right, is another timeless classic. Strong, well made, robust, simple, a good price – altogether great British engineering from a Midlands workshop. But it’s developed massively in that time. “Some of the components are still recognisable while others look completely different. It still does the same job, only much more efficiently now. And it’s a heck of a lot easier to build than it used to be.” Today, the Beta 2 lifts are among the most versatile on the market – ideal for trade use but just as well suited to heavy domestic collections, with a safe lifting capacity of 500kg. They can be supplied as a lip lift for wheeled bin collections or with Paladin or DIN arms and the rave can be dropped down to 120cm for easier manual loading. The multi-position bump bar accommodates a wide range of bins and, with skids to open roll-top containers, there’s not much these industry stalwarts won’t tackle. They come with all the safety and efficiency features you’d expect from a bin lift fit for the 21st century and, understanding the working conditions operators face, safety is our designers’ priority.
Our Beta bin lift is ideal for commercial waste collections
TO BEGIN AT THE BEGINNING: BLACKPOOL
The Dennis Eagle manufacturing facility in Blackpool plays a fundamental role in our UK operation. Producing a variety of cabs, including the Dennis Eagle Elite model, the team works meticulously to supply a stream of finished cabs for the next stage of the production process. It was 1960 when Dennis Eagle vehicle components were first manufactured at Blackpool. The plant hasnâ€™t always focused on RCV cabs though. To begin with, the manufacturing work covered an assortment of vehicles including fire engines, military vehicles and airport support vehicles. Since then, the plant has focused its development on RCVs and today the team in Blackpool manufacture an average of 20 Dennis Eagle cabs each week before they are sent on to the to the next stage of production in Warwick to be assembled with their chassis and body counterparts.
Blackpoolâ€™s Plant Manager, Steve Spence
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“ It all begins in the fabrication shop, which is the area where we spot weld, sub-assemble and MIG weld the cab shell.”
The start of every Dennis RCV The team in Blackpool is made up of 73 people, each an integral part of the Dennis Eagle cab production process. Steve Spence, Plant Manager at Blackpool, is currently responsible for the operational management of cab production at the site. He explains the process further: “We assemble all components here to produce the finished cab. We’re currently rolling out between 18-21 cabs each week. “It all begins in the fabrication shop, which is the area where we spot weld, sub-assemble and MIG weld the cab shell. As part of the fabrication process, we assemble what we class as the body for ‘white cabs’ – which is our term for pre-painted cabs. All of these elements are completed in one section of the factory with a team of around 20. “From there, the work is inspected before heading to our paint shop. We need to ensure every aspect of our cab is correct before sending it on for painting. Our team of eight painters will then decide what preparation
treatment is needed. Based on customer specification, the painters will then prime and complete a top coat on each of the white cabs. The colour of the cab can range from any single colour to two-tone colours and stripe decals.
of the factory, making sure all the managers have the tools, equipment and information they need. I also forecast the workload that we have in the pipeline, usually planning for projects around six-to-eight weeks in advance.
“Finally, the cab heads into the assembly shop. With a team of 30, this is where we assemble all the internal components that feature inside the cab. The team begins work with what is essentially a bare, painted product, fitting all the remaining parts that you normally see inside a vehicle. This ranges from electrics, seats, interior and exterior panelling and lights.”
“Part of my role is to look at new products. We have to make sure we have the correct structure in place to manage a new product when it comes to site. Sometimes this entails changing the facility in some way using internal labour and assistance from outside contractors. This also means I regularly look into transport and materials while liaising with the team in Warwick.
2018 marks 11 years at Blackpool for Steve. In this time Steve has had his fair share of responsibilities, starting as a Production Engineer before moving onto Production Manager. Today, as Plant Manager, Steve uses his wealth of experience to ensure the facility is now being run as efficiently as possible.
“It’s fair to say my responsibilities have developed quite a bit. When I first started here, they were based more around the product. This has now changed to include the guys on the shop floor, making sure everyone has a nice working environment and good working conditions, but also stability. I aim to make sure we’re working as efficiently as possible; it’s a responsibility beyond just the product, it’s looking after the team as well.”
“I share roles out among the team. For me personally, I manage the day-to-day running
Developments in Blackpool Manufacturing has been going on at Blackpool since the early 1900s but, understandably, the plant has developed dramatically during that time. “We’ve gone through a lot of changes in the last three years, reshaping the factory as we know it. From the re-cladding of the whole factory roof to the complete refurbishment of our fabrication area, a lot has changed for the better. “The upgrade of our fabrication area means we now have a more efficient facility that is both clean and bright. We’ve installed LED lighting all through the facility, significantly improving visibility. On top of that, we’re now using the most up-to-date equipment too. So, everyone knows what they need to do, and everything is in its place, improving our efficiency. “We’ve also made similar changes to the paint shop, with new LED lighting throughout our individual preparation bays. With the four individual bays our capacity has been increased. “In terms of processes, we have had to keep up with our development as a site, so we have introduced a system of ‘enhanced organisation’. This has increased our efficiency across the site. Our documentation processes have also changed quite considerably. This is something we now take a lot of pride in as we’re always up-to-date.”
All staff, including Assembly Fitter Matthew Heys and Production Manager Peter Holroyd, enjoy the benefits of new LED lighting our own, modest Blackpool illuminations
• 1 960: Duple coaches built on the site • 1983: Hestair Group buys Duple • 73 staff at Blackpool • 2 0 engineers assemble cab bodies • 3 0 engineers fit internal components • 20 cabs produced each week • 4 9 years’ service from Welder Stephen Cardwell • 1 st female apprentice appointed this year • 2 018: Blackpool preparing for new cab range for USA
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Quality Assurance As the site has developed, the team at Blackpool has kept one key part of the process front-of-mind: quality assurance. Maintaining quality is something Steve and his team have built into the foundations of each system in the production process and beyond. “We regularly complete inspections right through the production process. One of those checks is a ‘self-inspection’ process, which involves each worker on the shop floor checking their work individually. “We call this a ‘no faults forward’ system, which ultimately means faults will not be passed on to the next person. With this system, the aim is that you’ll either rectify a fault before passing it on or notify the next person. This strategy works very well for us. “In addition to this, we also have two Quality Facilitators employed on site. They will check all the cabs before they are painted. This includes checking all fabrication processes, like welding and spot welding to make sure they’re all as they need to be. They’ll also
check all cabs after painting, checking the quality of the work with the Lead Co-ordinator to ensure it is of a high enough standard.
On average, the cab takes about seven days to progress through the facility - that’s from fabrication through to assembly.
“When the cabs come off the assembly line, we complete electrical testing which includes 150 individual component checks. All of these are carried out on every cab. Only then, after they are signed off, are they allowed to leave the factory.”
“On top of that, we have an inspection process that takes place simultaneously. This is accompanied by the documentation which follows the cab all the way through the process. This is updated with serial numbers, notes on issues or recommendations before it is scanned on to the computer system.”
A process of monitoring To maintain the high level of quality, the team at Blackpool use various monitoring systems to examine the processes throughout the site. Yet, while monitoring systems are beneficial, Steve believes it’s also important to maintain an element of simplicity. “We keep the monitoring processes as simple as we can, purely because it doesn’t help it to be over-complicated. The more complicated it becomes, the more difficult it is to manage.
Just like Dennis Eagle’s Warwick site, the Blackpool plant also benefits from the Production Monitoring System (PMS). This system has effectively helped to streamline and standardise the quality management processes at Dennis Eagle. Documenting information on a digital monitoring system has provided a real-time tracking process where all vehicle production activity is logged.
“We have a system in place which manages the cabs going through the production process. This is so we know what’s being made, at what time, right through the factory.
The close-knit team at Blackpool has quality assurance front-of-mind
S. WALSH & SONS BRING CLEAR VIEW TO TUNNEL VISION
15 new tipper vehicles have been purchased by S.Walsh & Sons A boat trip down the Thames is high on any London visitor’s wish list: Tower Bridge, the London Eye, the Houses of Parliament ... but for decades, any journey downstream has been accompanied by untreated sewage, spilling into the river from London’s ageing Victorian sewerage system. But that’s all set to change with the Thames Tideway Tunnel, an ambitious project to create a major new sewer that will tackle sewer overflows and protect the river for the next 100 years. As part of the project, London-based construction company S Walsh & Sons has been awarded a contract to assist in the removal of construction and waste materials from locations along the route of the tunnel. To support this work, it has taken delivery of 15 new tipper vehicles with Fruehauf bodies fitted to Dennis Eagle Elite 6 chassis. Forming part of Dennis Eagle’s Urban Safety Vehicle range, the cabs offer an unparalleled standard of direct visibility for the driver and
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have been awarded a five-star Direct Vision Standard rating. Exceptional in-cab visibility is achieved through a combination of features specifically designed to give drivers a better sense of the vehicle’s overall proportions and a comprehensive, unobstructed view of their immediate surroundings. The result is improved safety for vulnerable road users in urban environments. A panoramic windscreen with larger windows than most conventional cabs helps to maximise visibility when manoeuvring or turning and the driver’s seating position is lower, greatly reducing the risk of cyclists and pedestrians disappearing from sight when close to the vehicle. We spoke to Nathan Hopgood, Senior Transport Manager at S. Walsh & Sons, who explained more about the company, its role in the Tideway Tunnel Project and the decision to purchase the new vehicles. “The business was founded by Sean Walsh and has an established history of trading
with many of the world’s largest contractors. Its success over the years has been built on forming successful working relationships and providing innovative solutions for complex major projects.
“With its five-star Direct Vision Standard rating, the Elite 6 cab was an obvious contender” “The first major contract Walsh secured was with French (now Kier) for the Sea Wall in Essex and this led to the company gaining a strong reputation for the successful delivery of major national projects throughout the 70s, 80s and 90s. “Over the past decade we have significantly diversified to provide support to construction developments across a number of sectors, including the marine, rail and logistics industries.
“We’ve always gone for big tenders and have worked on many prestigious projects in recent years including Crossrail, the London Overground, the Channel Tunnel Rail Link (HS1), the Olympics, the Thameslink programme and the National Grid Power Tunnels. Having these to our name undoubtedly helped to demonstrate the expertise we could potentially bring to the Tideway project and helped us to win the contract. “As a company we’re not scared of investing in new vehicles or equipment, and this is another factor that has contributed to our success over the years. With the increase in construction traffic that the Tideway project is likely to bring to the capital, Tideway and Transport for London insisted on the highest standards of safety from trucks involved in
transporting materials to and from its worksites, so this was an important priority for us when looking to purchase the new tipper vehicles. “With its five-star Direct Vision Standard rating, the Elite 6 cab was an obvious contender. We had a demonstration vehicle for a few days and I took it into London to trial it. It was so different from our conventional construction cabs that it took a while to get used to. However, after a couple of days I was converted. I like the visibility it offers. And the fact you can easily see your immediate surroundings and make eye contact with cyclists and pedestrians is a big advantage when it comes to safety, especially in the busy urban areas the vehicles will be operating in. We had positive feedback from many of our drivers too – once they had got into it they didn’t want to get out of it.
“Another plus point for us was the fact that Dennis Eagle is a UK-based company. We felt comfortable with the level of aftersales support they offer and confident that we will easily and quickly be able to get hold of spare parts if we need them in the future. As a result, we ordered 15 tipper vehicles with Elite 6 cabs which were delivered earlier this year. “Our work on the project is due to kick-off in spring 2019, with our involvement expected to last for two to three years. The tippers will be responsible for transporting waste materials from the excavation areas to landfill sites. It’s a huge undertaking but with the company’s strong track-record of working on similar projects, we’re confident we have the expertise and vehicles to undertake the work efficiently and safely.”
Planned route for Thames Tideway Tunnel
London’s super sewer: Why the capital needs it and what it will achieve The River Thames has always played a central role in the life of London and its contribution to the economic, social, political and cultural life of the modern day city is difficult to overstate. However, for centuries it has also been used as a conduit for the removal of the city’s waste and in the summer of 1858 – known as the ‘Great Stink’ – a decision was finally made to rid the river of its burden, with a law passed to facilitate this. The result was a 1,100-mile network of sewers designed by visionary engineer, Sir Joseph Bazalgette. In 1858, London was home to
two million people, and Bazalgette had the foresight to build his sewerage system to cope with a population twice that size. However, with the number of people living in the capital today approaching nine million, the system now lacks the capacity to meet the demands of modern living. As a result, millions of tonnes of raw, untreated sewerage overflow from the system each year, spilling into the Thames.
Starting in Acton, west London, the tunnel will travel through the heart of the city at depths of between 30 and 60 metres, using gravity to transfer waste eastwards. Once work is complete, the amount of sewerage discharged into the Thames will have decreased by 95 per cent, creating a better environment for London and its inhabitants.
Tideway’s solution is designed to address this with a 25km tunnel intercepting, storing and ultimately transferring sewerage waste away from the River Thames.
ELITE 6: IN A LEAGUE OF ITS OWN
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The Elite 6 chassis has been a firm favourite with the refuse collection industry for many years, setting the benchmark for quality and reliability. Thanks to the added benefits it offers in terms of safety, efficiency and comfort it is also becoming a popular choice for customers within the construction and logistics sectors. These are just some of the features that set it apart from the competition:
Lowest entry cab on the market
Euro 6 with automatic gearbox
At just 495mm from floor to step, the Elite 6 is the lowest entry cab – as well as the only single step model – on the market. This allows drivers to see other road users and pedestrians at eye level. Its flat and unobstructed walk through cab floor has illuminated step entry, so that operators and crews can carry out tasks safely and efficiently.
Available in 280 or 320bhp variants, the MD8 Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO) fuel compliant engine offers high torque at low speeds across a wide range of RPM for better power output and potential fuel savings. In addition, all Elite 6 chassis benefit from Allison World Series automatic six speed transmission with two power take off (PTO) points and integral retarder options.
Available in 2.5 and 2.25m width variants, the Elite 6 also comes with a variety of wheelplan options. These include 4x2, 6x2 mid-lift, mid-steer or rear-steer, 6x4 wide and 8x4 wide rear-steer. What’s more, it also has the shortest low-entry chassis overhang on the market, helping to reduce the overall length of the vehicle for an excellent turning circle.
Front and rear suspension
Chassis frame and cab panels
Giving a smoother drive and increased stability, systems include ‘full air’ suspension for all standard width vehicles and ‘air assist’ for narrow track variants, both with independent raise and lower control options. Rear air suspension also comes as standard so the entire chassis benefits from a more comfortable and operationally efficient ride.
The 10mm ‘C’ section non-fletched chassis frame does not have any unnecessary holes drilled but can be pre-drilled to body-builder requirements if needed. This helps to ensure the strength of the structure is not compromised, while modular cab panels help cost-effective repair and maintenance.
Unrivalled direct driver visibility Awarded a five-star Direct Vision Standard rating, the Elite 6 leads the industry when it comes to enhancing safety for vulnerable road users, especially in urban environments. A panoramic windscreen, with larger windows than most conventional cabs, provides optimum visibility when manoeuvring or turning. And a lower driver seating position prevents pedestrians or cyclists disappearing from view when nearby.
TURNING DIRECT VISION INTO REALITY
Independent consultant Glen Davies specialises in freight policy, city logistics, environment and safety. He previously worked at Transport for London where he is credited with developing FORS into a nationwide scheme, creating the CLOCS initiative and working with manufacturers, operators and regulators to set up the Direct Vision Standard. Here he discusses Direct Vision and what needs to be done by all parties to make it work. London Mayor Sadiq Khan’s Vision Zero plan to ban certain HGVs from the capital’s roads is a very clear indication that we are about to experience a significant shift in vehicle design. As part of Khan’s manifesto, which which aimed to promote “safer, cleaner lorries”, his ground-breaking proposal for the world’s first HGV Direct Vision Standard will potentially see all but the highest rated HGVs removed from London’s roads.
The standard The HGV blindspot is regularly cited as a factor in fatal collisions. This is hardly surprising given that HGV cabs are flat fronted, brick shaped, have three windows, six mirrors and still need a blindspot camera system for a driver to see properly. Drivers are now at the point of information overload
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and we are past the point of sticking plaster solutions, such as more or bigger mirrors and technology-based safety systems. The HGV Direct Vision Standard will utilise a star-rating from 0-5 similar to EuroNCAP, depending on the level of direct vision the driver has from the cab. The original proposal was to ban zero-star rated HGVs from London
“Dennis Eagle is well ahead of the game having offered a high vision low entry vehicle since the early 1990s”
entirely by January 2020 and only allow those HGVs which are three-star and above to operate by 2024. However, as the industry is not ready for such a radical change, ‘Safe System’ permit conditions will be required for lower DVS rated vehicles in the early stages of the scheme. That said, Transport for London, the Greater London Authority and major infrastructure projects, such as Tideway, will lead by example and use their buying power to adopt the standard in their supply chain contracts much earlier.
Glen Davies from A to H Solutions There are currently around 35,000 potentially zero-star rated HGVs operating in and around the capital. These are the vehicle types categorised as ‘off-road’ and traditionally employed in construction operations. These vehicles have been involved in around 70% of cyclist fatalities involving HGVs in the last three years. More than 50% of those killed on UK roads are from the ‘vulnerable’ groups and in London the HGV is significantly overrepresented in these collisions. Transport for London estimates that up to 25% of the UK’s HGV fleet enters London every day, therefore, it is inevitable that whatever measures London deploys will soon be followed by the rest of the country.
HGV design Political ambition to address this issue isn’t new. Khan’s predecessor Boris Johnson, introduced the Safer Lorry Scheme and considered a proposal to require all HGVs to be retrofitted with vision panels in passenger doors. The HGV Direct Vision Standard supersedes this proposal and provides a starrating system that recognises both the best and worst in class for direct vision. Although this may be seen as a more extreme measure, it is a progressive approach that allows the customer to choose a bit like the energy-rating for a fridge or the star-rating system for hotels. And who would stay in a zero-star hotel? Khan’s announcement highlights the fact that the fundamental design of HGV cabs has not evolved in decades, while our city streetscapes and population have changed dramatically. The numbers of vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians in our cities is everincreasing. The road network is becoming more congested and the obvious conclusion is that we need 21st century vehicles for 21st century streets.
The panoramic windscreen of the Urban Safety Vehicle provides the driver with a clear view of cyclists and pedestrians even when they’re close to the vehicle
There is no good reason for vehicles designed for severe off-road conditions to be regularly operating on heavily congested city streets – both HGV design and the off-road ground conditions they operate on need to change. The good news is that vehicle manufacturers are making a positive contribution to this debate. All of the principal HGV manufacturers supplying the GB market now offer an enhanced direct vision solution. However, Dennis Eagle is well ahead of the game, having offered a high-vision, low-entry vehicle since the early 1990s. Improvements in vehicle design are being made now but, to date, they have generally been in response to calls from operators to tackle a long-standing emotive issue. Vehicles such as the Dennis Eagle Elite 6 have been collecting waste on urban streets for years but is now being released to market in a range of operational configurations, including the Elite 6 urban construction vehicle. It has a 20-tonne payload capacity, enhanced safety features, low driver-seating position and panoramic windows that allow drivers to directly see cyclists and other road-users close to the cab. It also has all-round air suspension, so the ride height can be raised at speeds up to 15kph – meaning off-road approach and departure angles aren’t compromised. The Elite 6 has also been put to the off-road test at Millbrook Proving Ground to provide further confidence to the construction sector. And it has demonstrated that it is a good, urban all-rounder, fully capable of driving off-road in both wet and dry conditions. Fifteen of these vehicles have already been introduced into
the Tideway supply chain operated by S Walsh and Sons. However, other manufacturers need to be more proactively involved so that they aren’t simply reacting to the demands of their customers but are helping by providing solutions to address the issues. In light of Sadiq Khan’s announcement, there have naturally been responses from industry groups, operators, cycling campaigners and others seeking to share their views on the potential impact of the new HGV Direct Vision Standard. For some this is a step too far, for others it will never be far enough. We have the potential for collaborative, ground-breaking change. Industry needs time to adapt and to get the solution right, but
vehicle manufacturers, fleet operators and those employing HGVs in their supply chains need to embrace this change. It is also time for pressure groups and the cycling community to recognise the important and significant investment the vehicle manufacturing and logistics industry is making to improve the safety of the most vulnerable road users. In short, it is now down to all parties to work together to make these much-needed changes a success. Adopting the right attitude is essential and thought-leaders in every group have a vital role to play but with a common goal in mind, this should be achievable.
PANDA’S SUSTAINABLE SUCCESS STORY
As the waste and recycling revolution steps up a pace, new opportunities are coming thick and fast. But, while plenty of enterprising businesses may seize them, only true entrepreneurs have the vision to put those opportunities together and forge the bigger picture. One such company is Dennis Eagle customer Panda Waste. Today, Panda is one of the cornerstones of the Beauparc Group which employs 1,700 people and whose operations – all centred around the circular economy – are both diverse and spectacular. And it is the rest of the group that could have a profound influence on the business we do with Panda in the very near future, as you’ll soon see. But first some background. It all started in County Meath, north-west of Dublin, in 1990. A small business started up providing waste collection and recycling services to the Greater Dublin area. It was called Panda. It soon grew into one of Ireland’s most recognisable brands and acquired other waste companies as it went along, to become the country’s leading commercial and domestic waste management company.
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Brian Bolger (L) says Panda and Dennis Eagle enjoy a long and trusted relationship through our agent in Ireland, Martin Ryan (R) One of the principles of our revolution, of course, is that nothing should go to waste. And, as Panda collected more and more waste, the team soon spotted opportunities. And they seized them with both hands. In Ireland, Beauparc operates landfill-gaspowered generators, producing enough electricity to power 25,000 homes. Another company within the group – Panda Power – also sells green energy to homes and
businesses, from renewable sources including solar, wind, wave and biogas. Its recycling operations create refuse-derived fuel (RDF), solid recovered fuel (SRF), recycled fibres for the packaging industry, wood chips for making pallets, composts for agriculture and horticulture and numerous recycled commodities which it sells through its office in China and all over Europe.
Drivers and crews were consulted about the new vehicles before they were bought
Dennis Eagle has been providing refuse collection vehicles to this rapidly growing business in Ireland since 2005. And in 2015, Beauparc expanded into the UK, acquiring waste treatment specialists New Earth Solutions with its mechanical biological treatment (MBT) plants in Avonmouth, Canford, Cotesbach and Blaise. Here, it provides sustainable waste treatment services to both local authority and commercial customers.
“Across Ireland and the UK, the Beauparc group of companies handles around 2.1 million tonnes of waste material each year.” In 2017 it acquired a waste management, recycling and resource recovery business WSR Recycling which processes up to 300,000 tonnes of waste per annum through facilities in north-west England.
In 2018, it acquired the skip hire and waste management business Scotwaste with its state-of-the-art MRF facility at Bathgate, serving customers in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Fife, Livingston and central Scotland. And earlier this year, Beauparc also acquired the perpetual license rights for the Big Belly Smart Bin in 60 countries. Big Belly – a replacement for traditional litter bins – compacts litter so it can contain more than eight times more rubbish than a standard bin. It is solar powered, with eight hours daylight running one bin for a month, and each bin tells operators how full it is via GPS so they only come to empty it when it is needed. Today, across Ireland and the UK, the Beauparc group of companies handles around 2.1 million tonnes of waste material each year. With the help of Dennis Eagle vehicles. Brian Bolger takes up the story. He’s Maintenance Manager of Plant and Fleet for the Beauparc Group and Managing Director of Spanners Ltd. That’s the company Beauparc set up to service its fleet of more than 500 vehicles. And, in the entrepreneurial spirit you’d expect, other people’s vehicles too.
“I joined the business in 2011 and we were already operating Dennis Eagle vehicles at that stage,” said Brian. “Today, all the collection companies within our group use Dennis Eagle vehicles… Panda, Greenstar, Mahon’s, Scotwaste and more… mainly for commercial and domestic waste collections. “As we have been using Dennis for a long time, our familiarity with the products helps our technicians and crews alike. And our knowledge of the product, with regards to maintaining and servicing, is important to us in terms of fleet uptime. “We also have a long and trusted relationship with Dennis Eagle UK and Martin Ryan – their agent here in Ireland. We find their help and knowledge of the waste industry is unrivalled. “At Spanners, we service and maintain all our own vehicles but rely on high level support from the Dennis Eagle factory. “The aftermarket support from Robin Turner – the General Service Manager (South) – and his team in the UK, who I have also built good relationships with throughout the years, gives me comfort in knowing we have the back-up when required.”
Panda’s familiarity with Dennis Eagle RCVs helps crews and boosts vehicle uptime, says Brian Bolger
“We have plans to invest heavily in electric trucks and – with Panda Power and our electricity being 100% renewable – we will have a fleet of trucks running totally on renewable energy.”
That long-running relationship has continued this year, with Panda recently buying 28 complete vehicles and a further 30 are already ordered for delivery in 2019. “It’s always initially been about price, quality and back-up service for me but in an ever changing industry our carbon footprint as a company has now become one of our biggest priorities,” explained Brian. Companies operating in the waste and recycling industry need to be conscious of their own green credentials. To put it bluntly, it’s no good cleaning up somebody else’s mess if, in doing so, you make a mess yourself. Local authorities and businesses in the private sector look carefully at the operations of their contractors and the bar for environmental standards is constantly being raised. If you don’t meet those standards you don’t win the contract. Of course, for waste management companies, reducing the carbon-footprint inevitably involves the transition from diesel to cleaner fuels. At Dennis Eagle, we’ve been working hard on developing alternative fuel systems for our vehicles for many years. And it’s no secret that we’ll be launching our first all-electric vehicle in the near future.
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But Ireland and the UK have different approaches to diesel-fuelled vehicles. “I think the obvious difference is that the UK has its different emissions zones set up in places like London and several other cities which, in turn, means the fleet operator has to use the latest low-emission vehicles in highly populated areas,” said Brian. “Ireland needs to catch up in terms of applying the same rules and also help support fleet owners and operators to invest in the latest technology available. Lowering emissions, as a whole, must be everyone’s number one goal.” For a company rooted firmly in the circular economy, like the Beauparc Group, it seems electric vehicles are the obvious way forward but sometimes new technologies take a while to bed in. And it’s also well-known that progress is often rapid in the early years after a new technology is introduced. Consequently, some businesses are hesitant and hold back, letting others iron out the creases and then buying-in a few years later when the dust has settled. Not Beauparc. “It’s the future of technology within the motor trade. Diesel is not sustainable and the whole industry is working hard to get electric vehicles mainstream.
“For us as a company, we will introduce more and more electric vehicles to our fleet, starting in the very near future. We have placed a number of electric vans into the group this year. “These are very exciting times and the technology is ever-changing and developing. Five years ago, people laughed at the idea of a 26-tonne vehicle being electric yet now it’s becoming reality. “We have plans to invest heavily in electric trucks and – with Panda Power and our electricity being 100% renewable – we will have a fleet of trucks running totally on renewable energy. It really doesn’t get much better for us in terms of our commitment to lowering our carbon footprint!” You can see how Beauparc is putting the pieces of the jigsaw together to create a beautiful example of the circular economy: it sends its trucks out to collect waste, then recycles it and generates energy from it which it uses to fuel more trucks. Of course, electric power – albeit from totally renewable sources – isn’t the only alternative to diesel. Would Beauparc consider any of the others? “While I believe electric vehicles are the ultimate choice in terms of emissions, the future will be a variety of natural gas vehicles, electric vehicles and diesel vehicles, depending on the routes and applications. “We also have plans to run a portion of our fleet on the natural gas generated from our own anaerobic digestion (AD) plant.”
There’s that sustainability model shining through again. Beauparc seems to have a clear vision of how all these pieces fit together, even to the point of understanding what their fleet will look like in the future. “In 10 years’ time we’ll run a variety of vehicles in the UK and Ireland, perhaps with a fleet size of 600. I envisage the breakdown will be 60% electric, 30% compressed natural gas (CNG) and 10% diesel.” The clarity with which Beauparc sees the future is sure to raise eyebrows in some quarters but any doubters should look at the
Beauparc’s waste handling
Our mission is to build better businesses through creative innovation, clear vision, and a commitment to sustainability. As we continue to expand and grow, Beauparc remains firmly committed to delivering efficient and renewable utility and energy solutions.
Beauparc has invested heavily in infrastructure over the years and now has state-of-the-art facilities handling a variety of waste streams. This includes:
We want to become the largest supplier of fuels across Europe to a wide range of off-takers. Our strategy is to continue to build and add to our Irish business but the main growth will be in the UK and Europe where we have identified key strategic acquisitions and business opportunities that will deliver a business in the UK that is larger than our current Irish operation.
• Exporting 500,000 tonnes per annum of refuse-derived fuel (RDF) to countries in continental Europe and 450,000 tonnes pa to energy facilities in Ireland and the UK. • Producing 150,000 tonnes pa of solid recovered fuel (SRF) with which it supplies all the cement kilns in Ireland and exports to Europe. Two new facilities will increase production capacity by up to 100,000 tonnes pa – both plants will be operational during October 2018. • A timber processing operation that shreds 80,000 tonnes pa, mainly for the pallet industry.
breath-taking manner in which they’ve gone about building a business that epitomises sustainable waste and recycling – and got it right. For Dennis Eagle, the way forward is also clear: Our vehicles have helped all this happen. We have a “long and trusted relationship” with Beauparc who say our “knowledge of waste collections is unrivalled”. As the industry changes dramatically in the next few years, we clearly have a lot of hard work to do to provide the products and services Beauparc requires. But we’re starting from a pretty good position.
• Handling 80,000 tonnes pa of food waste for composting and AD facilities, including its own facility with a 50,000 tonnes pa capacity. • Processing 350,000 tonnes pa of recyclables, exporting the commodities it extracts to different countries. The Beauparc office in China handles deals with the off-takers. • Collecting, sorting, baling and reselling dry recyclable waste materials, resulting in the trading of more than 335,000 tonnes pa of recycled fibre in Ireland. The remainder of the materials Beauparc handles comes from its construction/ demolition and skips business and it is processed in various plants designed to deal with this waste stream.
Duncan Curtlin and his manufacturing Quality team work closely with every stage of the production process
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“ Every single vehicle we build is checked in detail by the Quality team”
“No one loves the messenger who brings bad news.” Although that observation was recorded 2,400 years ago by the Greek playwright Sophocles, it remains painfully true today. Breaking bad news is always a thankless task but rarely one that can be avoided. And whenever something goes wrong with the production of a vehicle, it’s Dennis Eagle’s Manufacturing Quality team, led by manager Duncan Curtlin, that takes on the mantle of that unloved messenger. “We are the guardians of quality,” said Duncan. “It’s down to us to make sure every vehicle that leaves the factory meets the very high standards we set. It is an essential role. Without it we wouldn’t enjoy the reputation we have for quality and we wouldn’t be able to take pride in what we produce. So we have an important job to do. “Our production teams are the best in the industry but they’re only human. Whenever issues arise, our job is to identify them and report back to the relevant team to correct them and learn from them. “But nobody likes to be told they’ve done something wrong – I certainly don’t – so you’ve got to have a thick skin and everyone involved needs to be able to deal with issues that arise maturely and professionally.” That may sound straight forward but the culture that’s needed for this approach to work is not easily achieved. It is on the record that many manufacturing businesses have tried to produce it … and failed. It can’t be imposed, it has to develop. It is also easily lost. So, needless to say, when a company has got this culture, as Dennis has, it is a precious commodity.
To achieve it, the right tone needs to be set at the top, one that inspires trust and encourages open and honest two-way communication. Then everyone listens to both the good news and the bad news – the brutal facts laid bare – so that, in the spirit of continuous improvement, changes can be made.
“Our key role, the thing everyone sees us doing, is the PDI process – the Pre-Delivery Inspection – which has had to develop just as much as the vehicles themselves. We now perform more than 400 checks and there are new ones being introduced all the time.”
“Here, at Dennis Eagle, we work very closely with all departments of the business and over the years we’ve built up a very good rapport with them,” said Duncan.
These checks include road and rollerbrake testing. Tachographs are fitted and calibrated on site (Dennis Eagle is the only VOSA-approved company to calibrate its own tachos), so reducing the time the vehicle spends off-site and the costs.
That’s nearly 30 years in his case, after working his way up from a Craft Apprentice to head up the team of 20 experienced staff in the Warwick headquarters who make sure the vehicles that go to customers are worthy of the Dennis Eagle brand.
If Terberg lifts are fitted, Terberg’s own PDI team performs the relevant checks themselves. The Beta 2 lifts are PDI checked on Dennis’s own line. And additional systems, such as safety cameras and vehicle graphics, are all added by third-parties.
“I joined Dennis Eagle in 1989 on a four-year apprenticeship scheme gaining experience within each department, before I was offered a permanent position on the chassis line. During that time I played a key part in setting up one the first line production processes – ‘footprints’ as we call them. I then moved into sales where I completed vehicle demonstrations, operator instruction and final vehicle PDI.
Beyond this, the Manufacturing Quality team’s role includes managing subcontractor work, calibration of test equipment, taxing and registering of vehicles and last – but certainly not least – delivery.
“This is a good company to work for and, consequently, we don’t get many leavers, so I’ve known a lot of people here for a long time and that certainly helps in the job we have to do. My wife Dawn works in our Parts department too! “Things have changed significantly, of course. Not only have we doubled production since I started but also the trucks have evolved – they are very different beasts today. Of course, being so much more sophisticated means there are more things to check and more things that can go wrong.
“For vehicle deliveries, we mainly use Dennis Eagle’s own drivers – they know what’s expected of them,” explained Duncan. “After all the effort we’ve gone to, to get a vehicle exactly as we’d want it, to deliver it in anything other than pristine condition and exactly on time would be inexcusable.” Dennis Eagle was first awarded the internationally recognised Quality Assurance Standard – ISO 9001 – in 1993 and has since been awarded the enhanced ISO 9001:2015 standard. This demonstrates the company’s commitment to quality in every aspect of its work and its insistence that quality is the responsibility of every employee.
Chassis are easier to check before the bodies are mounted
And so it follows that, while it is still the Manufacturing Quality team that provides that final check of the vehicle in its PDI, there are numerous checks all the way through production. At the end of the process, each vehicle enters a dedicated PDI Bay where it undergoes a series of tests and inspections tailored to that specific vehicle and based on the precise specification ordered by the customer. When faults are identified the vehicle goes into the “de-snag area” for the fault to be rectified. The communication between teams is crucial to the constant process of improvement. With Manufacturing Quality staff embedded in different parts of production, communication is constant. However, to see the bigger picture, quality meetings take place with the different production teams every week – or spontaneously if an urgent issue arises. “When we do the inspections, a point scoring system is used. These range from safety-
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critical faults, which are given 100 points, to one point for minor faults. One point is enough for the vehicle to go into the de-snag area. Each production area has its own Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) which are predominantly quality related. “Ultimately, when there’s a problem we work very closely with the production teams to get it right and getting it right first time is obviously what we’re all aiming for. Most of the time, of course, that’s exactly what they do.” One of the biggest improvements in the way the factory works was the introduction of electronic monitoring and tracking system – the Production Monitoring System (PMS) – around five years ago. The system was gradually rolled out to every stage of the production process, including PDI, and now there are touchsensitive monitors in every footprint. Here, the production team can see everything they need in real-time, from the precise customer specification of the vehicle they’re building
to notes and comments from those working on it before them, including drawings, torque settings and safety-critical elements. By the time the vehicle reaches the PDI Bay, a comprehensive picture of each vehicle and how it was built is available to Duncan’s team.
“One of the biggest improvements in the factory was the introduction of the PMS system.” And it doesn’t end there. The specific PDI checks required for individual vehicles are also listed and detailed to help the team dot every I and cross every T. “All this used to be recorded on paper so you can imagine, with the complexity of modern trucks, how much easier it is to manage now – and more environmentally friendly,” said Duncan.
The electronic Production Monitoring System is available throughout the factory and enables PDI checks to be more efficient than before
“It has enabled us to be far more specific, so the PDI is better than ever. There’s nobody else in the world that builds a complete refuse collection vehicle. We’re a one-stop shop and that enables us to check the whole vehicle on site. After the vehicle leaves here it goes straight to the customer.” Customers can only get their vehicles once these extensive checks are completed. But the checks themselves aren’t routine or random. They are well-informed decisions based on experience and the specific needs of each customer vehicle. In most walks of life, of course, the pendulum swings both ways and so the Manufacturing Quality team also has to answer for any mistakes it makes; the police are policed. And the words that send a shiver down the spine of Duncan and his team are ‘early-life failure’. “Naturally, we are judged on failures in the field. And it’s the main feedback we get because nobody’s ever going to call us to say ‘that vehicle hasn’t failed’.
“When it does happen, we have an ‘early-life failure meeting’ with everyone involved to identify what’s gone wrong and what we need to do to stop it happening in future. Often, it means adding new checks to our list yet this helps us continually improve. “If there’s a field service issue we meet our service engineers to understand what’s happened. “All this feedback – negative though it usually is – gives us real insight into what’s going on and we learn from it, as a team and as a company, what we need to change. It’s an absolutely vital part of the process that enables us to carry on improving.” And here, Dennis Eagle has a significant advantage over its competitors. With a significant UK market share, Dennis is producing more vehicles than anyone else. It, therefore, stands to reason that it’s on a faster learning curve than other manufacturers in terms of identifying and rectifying faults.
vehicles. It’s very exciting because it’s a new venture and may completely change the way we work. But we have got really good systems and standards in place. “Of course, they’ll have to be amended to suit a different type of vehicle and PDI will continuously be fine tuning the process, adding new checks and amending others all the time. “It will be a major challenge but we’re all really looking forward to it. It’s why we get out of bed in the mornings, isn’t it – new challenges? “The team’s very focused on making sure Dennis Eagle is seen as the best. Staying on top of the game is crucial to us. And it’s also the focus of the company. Put simply, we strive to be the best.”
“The big development on the horizon, of course, will be the introduction of electric
KEEPING YOUR FLEET MOVING
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It’s hardly surprising that vehicle repair and maintenance contracts have become a significant part of Dennis Eagle’s core business. Keeping a fleet operational, cost-effective and compliant has never been more vital. Our R&M contracts are run by the Aftermarket team for mixed fleets all over the UK and although we have been offering them since the early 1980s, this part of the business is growing faster than ever. Having taken stock of this, the company has now decided it is time to give the Repair and Maintenance operation its own, clear identity: DennisAssured. Aftermarket Director Geoff Rigg explained: “Today we’re dealing with far more sophisticated products. These need the right people with the right training and the right tools to look after them. And to put that fully into context, this needs to be done against the backdrop of a nationwide, long-term skills shortage. “While many fleet operators struggle to recruit and retain staff, we have found a formula to help overcome these challenges. While smaller operators can’t justify keeping full-time engineering staff, we can. And while many larger operators don’t have specialist engineers, we do. “But to provide repair and maintenance contracts successfully, we also have to be exceptionally customer-focused, so we provide a level of service that few others could match. “Staffing is fundamental to what we do. We guarantee frontline vehicles and we stay as late as we have to in order to get them fixed. We’ve actually introduced night shifts in one depot and expect several others to follow suit.”
but one of the key areas for me is the training we offer. “Our staff are well ahead of the curve when it comes to their skill sets and we also make sure they get refresher courses. This benefits our customers directly too. Our first-time-fix rates are excellent, which helps minimise vehicle downtime. “And we also train staff for opportunities that may lie ahead. Many managers – including senior managers – have worked their way up from apprenticeships. “In the Aftermarket division we have a regional structure where managers are typically extechnicians, practical people who are used to getting their hands dirty. Many of them have great experience with specialist vehicles too. So as well as seeing the bigger picture from a contract perspective, they understand the detail – namely what’s gone wrong and what needs to be done to fix it.” From a customer’s perspective, the quality and numbers of staff go hand-in-hand: they know there will always be sufficient, well-trained engineers to get their vehicles repaired, safe and back on the road in time to do their work. With teams of field service engineers all over the UK, there is also a pool of skilled, experienced labour to fall back on to cover illness, holidays or while recruiting at the start of a contract. And with Dennis Eagle also regularly taking on local apprentices, it’s no surprise that the company’s reputation for the quality of its engineering staff is second to none. What does sometimes raise an eyebrow, however, is the ethos our Repair and Maintenance contracts. “For us it’s all about proactive management based on first-class engineering,” said Geoff.
Geoff believes there are several attributes of Dennis Eagle that puts his teams in such a strong position to run DennisAssured R&M contracts. And top of the list, he believes, is that we’re an attractive employer.
“We find if we get the engineering right the P&L (Profit & Loss) looks after itself. Sometimes potential customers think they’ll be losing control if they contract out repair and maintenance of their fleet but they are not – they’re actually gaining it.
“Just look around the business in every department and you’ll see experienced, capable people, many of whom have spent most of their working lives with Dennis Eagle. Obviously there are all sorts of factors contributing to this, from good working environments to good remuneration packages
“First and foremost it means they can control their costs and plan ahead with real certainty. It also means they can concentrate on the job in hand, such as waste and recycling collections. With someone else making sure the fleet is working and compliant, it’s less for fleet managers to have to worry about.
Field Service Engineers - Carl Storie, Simon Nicholson, Andy Gill, Paul Charles (Senior Field Service Engineer) & Shaun Beswick
“It works for us too because we are totally realistic about what we can and can’t do. Occasionally, we’ll be invited in to look at a well-run, in-house R&M operation with a view to tendering for it but if we think we can’t add anything to what’s already being done, we’ll say so. “At the other end of the spectrum, we are selective about the sort of contracts we sign up to. We wouldn’t take on a simple van fleet because there is no value in it for us. And we run very few pay-as-you-go contracts because they can easily lead to conflicting interests. In the last year we’ve walked away from three opportunities for that very reason.” When new contracts are taken on, existing staff are usually transferred to Dennis Eagle by TUPE - Transfer of Undertakings Protection of Employment Regulations 2006. They are then assessed for their training needs and these are addressed in a timely fashion. “We are very hot on compliance,” said Geoff. “We apply the same standards in our workshops as we do at our factories in Warwick and Blackpool. Often training is needed to bring staff new to Dennis Eagle up to speed. Sometimes, before we can start, we need to find new premises. We have an experienced team able to do this quickly and efficiently so we hit the ground running and connect into the customer’s operations. “We also buy in all our own, top-quality equipment. That’s typically an investment of £90-100k on tooling at the start of a five-toseven year contract. We take full responsibility for it, including maintenance, servicing and calibration.
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“It all boils down to doing things properly. We bring in the right levels of resource to get the desired outcome. It’s safe, compliant and reliable – hence the name DennisAssured. And it leaves the customer to focus on their operations.” The DennisConnect telematics system, factory-fitted to all new Dennis Eagle vehicles, plays a valuable role in the repair and maintenance of a fleet. Not only does it help with remote diagnosis, parts ordering and the assignment of engineers to fix the problem, but it also helps plan and schedule routine maintenance and servicing for maximum efficiency. And where product warranties are involved, Dennis Eagle also runs these to ensure maximum value and minimum effort for the customer. “We have a very high repeat-business rate which suggests we’re doing a good job,” said Geoff. “Typically, contracts are between five and seven years with an option to extend them by a similar period. Sometimes, after that, they are renewed for even longer periods. “We structure contracts to avoid conflict. We have a proven formula for running them and it’s tweaked to a customer’s requirements but we’re always trying to improve upon it. All the managers and their teams have that engrained in them and it works very effectively. “We have a similar, inherent approach to product improvement. We upgrade products through our engineering skills to make them more reliable – even other manufacturers’ products.
Aftermarket Director Geoff Rigg “When reliable, well-trained and wellmotivated staff are fully integrated with our customer’s operations, improving the service we provide simply becomes the normal way of working. Our customers see this and they like it. They sometimes tell me it even rubs off on their own staff. That’s another thing we should be proud of. “And along with the reputation for getting the job done properly, the willingness to improve and provide the best customer service also needs to be synonymous with DennisAssured.”
Hambleton District Council, North Yorkshire Dennis Eagle used to have a five-year full repair and maintenance contract with Hambleton District Council in North Yorkshire, covering just the refuse fleet. But when, in 2015, the council contracted the supply and maintenance of its fleet to SFS, the fleet services specialist subcontacted repair and maintenance of the whole fleet to Dennis Eagle for 10 years, with the option of an additional 10-year extension. There are three staff at the Northallerton workshop which is fitted out with Dennis Eagle’s own equipment. The contract managing engineer has been qualified since 2001 and works with two qualified engineers and interviews were recently being conducted for an apprentice. The fleet of 30 vehicles includes RCVs, sweepers and vans. With a small operation, absence due to sickness or holidays could have an impact but with seven field service engineers working in the area there is always a pool of highly skilled labour to instantly call on.
‘Relationships are the key to success ... our team is very customer focused’ says David Cornwell, Regional Service Manager at Bexley The London Borough of Bexley lies close to the M25 in south east London. Since 2010, Dennis Eagle has provided fleet repair and maintenance for Serco which provides more than 23 million waste and recycling collections a year for the Council, helping Bexley achieve the highest recycling rate in London for the past 13 years. The strategic location of Dennis Eagle’s Service Centre the depot helps make this a huge operation: it also covers the London Borough of Havering’s waste and recycling fleet, supports other Dennis Eagle products in the area and runs commercial contracts. “We cover Kent, Essex and East Sussex too and around a third of our work is commercial,” said Regional Service Manager David Cornwell. “LB Bexley has 80 vehicles including 53 RCVs, tankers, sweepers and small vans and we look after them with five engineers and a supervisor. And we look after 30 Havering vehicles with another two engineers and a supervisor. “We have seven working pits, five sets of lifting legs, brake testing, fabrication ... we could even get 25 RCVs into the workshop. The only thing we don’t do on site is paint. “We have great relationships with both Councils and with Serco fleet management. Relationships are the key to success in this industry.
“It gives us complete peace of mind,” said fleet manager Sue Snedden. “They’re here for up to 20 years. This gives us the ability to settle – we don’t constantly have to go into procurement. “And while they are contracted to us, they work together with us in a partnership. There’s no bureaucracy. The team is excellent. They totally support us and will bend over backwards to help. You couldn’t ask for more. “We also get massive support through DennisConnect – it’s a lifeline. We’re obviously a very rural area and lone workers can be a concern but we can track them and see where they are. “They also support us with driving styles, picking up traits from the telematics system, and helping drivers change any bad habits. The way they use DennisConnect to help us is absolutely brilliant. “Working together, they are very much a part of the team but they take the strain. We simply don’t have to worry about the fleet – it’s taken care of.”
Our team is very customer focused and we’re all constantly striving to improve. “Staffing is always a challenge in London but our staff retention is excellent. We transferred some over by TUPE and they have been working here for as long as 20 years. Everyone has personal development reviews with their line-manager and we have a very strong focus on training. We have an apprentice on block release in Bristol and we’re interviewing for another now. “Staff need to be good because the demands on us are huge. This is London. These are challenging times – some customers need a two-hour response on breakdowns and the M25 creates massive challenges. It’s the pace of life, the congestion. That’s just the way it is here. “The regime is simple: all vehicles are checked by Serco and all defects are fixed by the end of the day, ready for the morning. We introduced a night shift to help achieve this. We work 6am to midnight four-days a week and 6am to 6pm on Fridays. “Bexley also offers an out-of-hours breakdown service and we already have three bespoke night contracts. One of those is with S. Walsh and Sons who recently bought 15 of our low-entry Elite tippers. “And now electric vehicles are heading our way. These are exciting times but we all understand you’re only as good as the last job you did.”
NEW VEHICLES IN SERVICE AT NORTHUMBERLAND 2018 has been a busy year for Northumberland County Council, as they begin to upgrade their 50 strong fleet of refuse vehicles in order to meet the increasing demands on waste services in the area. The Council has opted to use Dennis Eagle vehicles for a second time following the success of their previous use. The council already has a well-established and well-distributed network of facilities to deal with waste management. However, as part of its new plan, the environment has been brought into sharper focus than ever before, which means implementing even more effective waste management measures. A fortnightly collection scheme has already been implemented in a bid to reduce waste and operational costs. It is expected to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill by 4,000 tonnes a year and cut annual RCV mileage by 10,000 miles. While rural Northumberland covers a large area, the population is expected to grow
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significantly in the immediate future. Andrew Ward, Communications Business Partner at Northumberland County Council, explained the forecast. “Northumberland itself is huge and the majority of the housing stock is within the south-east corner of the county. There are 148,000 properties within the entirety of Northumberland, with a population of around 315,265. More than 70,000 of these properties are within the Ashington, Blyth and Cramlington areas. “As outlined in Northumberland Council’s development plan, it is estimated there will be a significant increase in household waste over the next 12 years. It is predicted that the county will generate 220,000 tonnes of municipal waste in 2019 which will rise to 232,000 by 2024. “The demand for housing has grown within Northumberland over the last few years, and we have had to take this into consideration in planning our fleet replacement programme.”
Northumberland first opted for Dennis Eagle vehicles back in 2010, following a route optimisation exercise. “The results from this project dictated standardising our refuse fleet, which required narrow vehicles to maximise access to narrow streets,” explained Andrew. “The Dennis Eagle bodies and chassis were deemed most suitable, especially with particularly hard-to-reach properties,” The council is now set to invest £8.6 million to replace its entire fleet while adding two extra vehicles to support the growing demands of Northumberland. Of course, each new vehicle features numerous technological enhancements which were not available when the existing fleet was purchased. These will not only improve performance and efficiency – and by extension, reduce environmental impact – but also improve safety.
The power of DennisConnect All 52 of the new Dennis state-of-the-art vehicles are designed with efficiency in mind and will play a key role in the council’s core sustainability strategy. In line with this, the vehicles deliver reduced exhaust emissions and better fuel economy. They also come fitted with the DennisConnect telematics system designed specifically for waste and recycling collections. The vehicle diagnostics programme leads to increased first-time fix rates, reduced vehicle downtime, preventive maintenance and smarter service and maintenance scheduling. Real-time vehicle tracking also enables us to send the closest engineer with the right skills and right tools for repair. And real-time monitoring of driving style even allows for the encouragement of more efficient driving style. The rural nature of Northumberland, with properties often reached along narrow lanes, and the terraced style of properties in the former mining villages, can make refuse collection in the county a challenge. Add to this the traditional street lay-outs in parts of the larger towns, such as Ashington, Cramlington, Morpeth and Blyth, and the manoeuvrability requirements of the new fleet were clear. Consequently, the vehicles feature rear-wheel steering and narrow-track bodies.
Dennis Eagle’s 6x2 Narrow rear-steer Olympus 19 c/w Terberg OmniDEL Xtra is perfect for collection in Northumberland “Greater manoeuvrability is made possible with this option,” said Andrew. “And the Olympus body still enables us to collect a payload of up to two tonnes more, so helping us increase the efficiencies of our rounds and improve our carbon footprint too.” The initial batch of vehicles have been rolling off the production line and on to
Northumberland’s streets since April this year, each fitted with full 360° cameras to increase safety for the crew and the general public. With two new vehicles being scheduled for delivery each month until all vehicles are in service, waste management operations in Northumberland are being brought right up to date: safe, efficient and environmentallyfriendly.
Northumberland councillor Glen Sanderson (L) and Head of Neighbourhood Services Greg Gavin approve of the new vehicles
A PERFECT MARRIAGE Mick Friend: General Sales Manager
General Sales Manager, Mick Friend, reunited with his wedding car - a rare 1902 ‘Dennis’
Our General Sales Manager Mick Friend has enjoyed a wonderful 40-year career with the company and he’s still loving it. We asked him to look back and pick out some of the landmarks in an industry that has changed so much.
around 20 and I couldn’t afford to stay in London so I went with them and got a job on the production line at Hestair Dennis as a welder. I then became what was known as a ‘progress chaser’ for parts and service – a role which later expanded to cover export.
“The business is always looking to the future and having the ability and freedom to grow existing markets and develop new ones is really interesting. It’s also a great company to work for, which shows through its low staff turnover.”
“I wanted to further my career so I applied for a job in sales. I got this and in 1984 I was asked to go out to South Africa for six months to cover for our Sales Manager who was leaving the business. My role was to promote the sale of fire appliances and bus chassis.”
Mick illustrates this point perfectly. He joined Guildford-based Hestair Dennis at the age of 21 in 1978 and hasn’t looked back since. He explained how it came about: “When I was younger I always wanted to be a pilot, but my eyesight wasn’t good enough. I was also very interested in engineering and into cars and vehicles – aged 23, I had a Ford Escort RS2000 which I spent every penny on!
It was not long before this that Mick had met and got engaged to Linda, a student midwife working in Guildford. Linda initially came out to South Africa for a holiday, but when Mick was asked to stay on in the role Linda also moved to South Africa and worked in local hospitals.
“I was born in Clapham, London, but my parents moved to Guildford when I was
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In 1985, the couple returned to the UK to get married in the village of Bookham, Surrey, where Linda grew up. The wedding car was a very rare 1902 Dennis driven by John Dennis, the grandson of the founder of Dennis.
“Looking back over the years, perhaps the most ground-breaking change of its time was the move to the original Elite low entry cab design”
The newlyweds then returned to Johannesburg to start a new life in South Africa. “Life was exceptionally good out there,” says Mick. “The climate was fantastic, we had our own boat and used to regularly go water skiing. And my role also took me to amazing places with breathtaking scenery around South Africa, as well as countries like Botswana and Namibia. However, in 1986 we found out that our first child was on the way and made the decision to return to the UK to be closer to friends and family.”
Today, as General Sales Manager, Mick looks after key accounts and private customers in the refuse industry, but his role is now expanding to cover clients in the construction and logistics sector. This has been made to the development of Dennis Eagle’s Urban Safety Vehicle range, but what are some of the other major developments Mick has seen over the years? “Technology has come on leaps and bounds,” he says. “When I first started out, refuse collection vehicles had 160BHP engines but today’s models now have 280BHP engines and feature advanced telematics systems. “Looking back over the years, perhaps the most ground-breaking change was the move to the original Elite low entry cab design. When we launched it at the IWM show in Torquay in 1992, the industry thought we had gone mad, and suggested it would never work on landfill sites. Twenty-six years later, having produced over 14,000 of these in various marques, I guess we proved the doubters wrong.
“We also launched the smooth-sided Phoenix 2 refuse collection vehicle at the same time. This has since evolved into the current Olympus body, the most popular refuse body by far in the UK and in many other markets around the world. The original Phoenix had been a great product for us but with recycling taking off in the UK, we needed a new design.
“More recently, we have seen the merger between Terberg Environmental and Dennis Eagle’s parent company Ros Roca Environment. The move made sense and the companies have come together seamlessly, with the benefit that we can now offer a comprehensive, complete-vehicle solution on a global scale.”
“As recycling became more mainstream and recyclable materials were separated there would often be a lot of acidic leachate left in the bodies which would previously have been soaked up by other materials and this could lead to damaged floors.
So, on reflection, if he had to start out all over again, would Mick have done anything differently?
“The Phoenix 2 had a keeled floor with internal sump, and could be built using the quicker and more accurate ‘slot and tag’ production method. In addition, 90 per cent of the electrical switches were moved out of the hopper area. Fewer electrical switches in that area meant less risk of water ingress – a major cause of vehicle faults – resulting in a far more reliable product.
“No,” he says: “If I hadn’t moved to Guildford I wouldn’t have met Linda and if I hadn’t joined Hestair Dennis I wouldn’t have got the opportunity to live and work in South Africa at a young age. We made some great memories there and often talk about going back to visit. We now have two amazing grown-up children and, I’m still finding my job rewarding and fulfilling at the age of 61.”
“ The business is always looking to the future, and having the ability and freedom to grow existing markets and develop new ones is really interesting” Mick and Linda in a 1902 Dennis – which was driven by John Dennis, the grandson of our company’s founder
EXTENDING OUR AFTERMARKET OFFER IN LEEDS
Whether you operate just one or two vehicles or a large fleet, we understand that keeping these on the road and running as efficiently as possible is vital to the success of your operations, and we’re proud to offer the largest Aftermarket and support structure in the industry.
region, offering convenient access to a wide range of aftermarket services, from accident repair and scheduled maintenance to insurance work and complete refurbishments.
In addition to our Warwick and Blackpool manufacturing sites, we have a network of 10 Service Centres. Strategically located throughout the UK, these are supported by a 70-strong team of mobile Service Engineers, meaning that assistance is on hand whenever and wherever you need it.
Around one-third larger than our previous site, the new facility has been custom-fitted to our exacting specification. A state-of-the-art workshop area features nine full-sized bays kitted out with top-quality specialist tools and equipment, with an overhead crane for lifting bodies directly onto their chassis. In addition, it also incorporates a warehouse stocked with an extensive range of regularly required parts, as well as a training or conference room, separate offices and a reception area.
As part of our ongoing commitment to delivering exceptional service and product support throughout the lifetime of contracts, we are continually seeking ways to improve the services we offer and the relocation of our Leeds Service Centre to Gildersome Spur earlier this year is just one such example.
Ensuring the seamless transition of services from the previous site to our new location was no mean feat and would not have been possible without support from the Service Centre’s team of highly skilled and dedicated individuals, headed up by Leeds Service Centre Manager Gary McLauchlan.
Providing customers in the north with access to one of the most comprehensive aftermarket facilities in the UK, the new Service Centre is ideally located with excellent reach across the
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Gary McLauchlan With more than 21 years’ service, Gary has extensive experience in the waste management industry, meaning our customers can be sure they are in capable hands. He began his career with an apprenticeship programme in engineering and, prior to joining Dennis Eagle, he had previous roles in the waste industry, ranging from Field Service Engineer to Fleet Engineering Manager.
A strong heritage in Leeds Although we have had a Service Centre in the Leeds area since the 1960â€™s, our heritage in the region dates back significantly further and can be traced back to 1901, when the Yorkshire Patent vehicle Company produced its first ever steam wagon. In the 1970s, the company became part of the Hestair Group which eventually became known as Dennis Eagle in the 1980s. A small part of this rich legacy was showcased at the official opening of our new Leeds Service Centre, earlier in the year, where a 1905 model produced by the Yorkshire Patent Steam Wagon Company took pride of place alongside some of our modern-day vehicles.
The 1905 Yorkshire Patent steam wagon took pride of place at Leeds Service Centreâ€™s open day
The two-tonne No. 117 wagon was originally in service in North Wales and carries the registration CA 170, which was issued by Denbigh County Council. Lovingly restored by owner John Ward, who bought it 18 years ago, it is thought to be the only surviving one of its kind in the world.
A Dennis Eagle 6x2 rear-steer, Olympus 21 demonstrator c/w Terberg OmniDEL Full Width bin lift was there for visitors to see
Our services and capabilities
On-site parts warehouse
Online Electronic Parts Catalogue
Our extensive expertise enables us to offer customers a comprehensive range of services:
With its very own on-site parts warehouse, our Leeds Service Centre provides immediate access to a wide range of frequently ordered components. If we haven’t got what you need in stock, we can order it, with same day delivery from our parts distribution warehouse.
We are the only refuse collection vehicle manufacturer to provide a comprehensive online Electronic Parts Catalogue covering all body and bin lift equipment. The system enables customers to pull up their own unique vehicle specifications and identify parts by number or diagram for next day delivery, for fast and accurate ordering (see Spare parts at the touch of a button, page 6, for further details).
• M OT inspections and preparation to DVSA standards • P roviding a one-stop-shop for all your MOT requirements, the team can arrange to have your vehicles booked for an annual inspection and prepared to DVSA standards. With a nationwide First Time Pass Rate exceeding 99 per cent, at the time of going to press, we aim to provide a hassle-free experience to keep your vehicles compliant and running smoothly.
As well as workshops and offices, Leeds Service Centre has excellent training facilities.
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A customer’s perspective
With a wealth of skilled engineers, outstanding facilities and a customer-service ethic which we think is second-to-none, we offer:
East Riding of Yorkshire Council operates a fleet of around 68 refuse collection vehicles and has worked with our Leeds Service Centre for six years. We spoke to their Workshop Manager Ben Thomas, who explained more about the benefits of this partnership:
• R epair and maintenance contracts • L oler inspections and certification • A ccident damage and repair work • C hassis servicing and repairs • R efuse body servicing and repairs • B in lift servicing, repairs and conversions • M OT inspections and preparation to DVSA standards • N on Dennis Eagle body refurbishments
“We have our own workshop-based team consisting of around 25 members of staff, but the support we receive from Dennis Eagle’s Leeds Service Centre plays an important role in helping us to keep our fleet operating smoothly. “The majority of work is completed here on site and consists of fairly straightforward warranty repairs, but in cases where it takes us longer to diagnose a fault we know we can
rely on the team at Leeds to help us quickly identify and resolve the issue. “We get on well with Dennis Eagle and find them friendly and pleasant to deal with. Robyn Spalding in the office is often our first point of contact and she is extremely well-organised, keeping on top of things at all times to help achieve the best results. In cases where an engineer is called out to assist us, the fact Dennis Eagle can provide accurate estimated arrival times is helpful. In addition, our experience when it comes to ordering spare parts is very good – there have been times where we have placed an order at around 4pm and the parts we need have been delivered first thing the next morning, enabling us to get on with the job and get vehicles back out on the road.”
Leeds Service Centre is not just a highly practical customer-focussed facility; it’s also part of Dennis Eagle’s heritage
TERBERG MATEC UK ‘OMNI’ RANGE OF BIN LIFTS Terberg’s market-leading Omni lifts offers every feature an operator could need from a bin lift. The Omni family of products are born out of experience and customer feedback with safety, efficiency and durability at the very heart of the design process. They also work hand-in-glove with Terberg’s increasingly sought-after bin-weighing solution. Omni lifts are robust, safe and require minimal maintenance thanks to vibration resistant ‘plug and play’ components, bearing protection systems and contactless wear-free angle sensors. This attention to detail coupled with the innovative design features make for outstanding operational performance and flexibility.
Automatic Low Level Bin Lifts
The OmniDEL split automatic range is a low level lift that gives huge flexibility to waste operators. As well as the split twin automatic version, Terberg also have an Omni product to cover multiple waste stream collections where required. For example, the OmniDEL 50:50 and the OmniDEL Triple are specifically designed to mount to split bodied RCVs meaning segregation of materials is easy. The OmniDEL-FW gives the huge benefit of allowing the operator to consider bulkier waste collections where needed. And of course, all of the above can be supplied as 24v electric variants meaning potential fuel savings, noise reduction and – environmental benefits.
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• OmniDEL (Standard & Xtra) • OmniDEL Full Width • OmniDEL Triple • OmniDEL 50:50
Automatic High Level Bin Lifts
When manual loading is not needed, the OmniDEKA high level split bin lift will give excellent operational functionality.
The lift has short rear overhang and – an impressive 46° container tip angle. The modern design incorporates larger viewing windows giving greater visibility improving both operation and safety at the same time. As with all Omni products, the OmniDEKA has been designed with weighing in mind and is therefore fully compatible with the Terberg integrated weighing solution. The electric OmniDEKA(E) has the same performance and safety characteristics with impeccable environmental credentials.
Manual/Trade Bin Lifts
If commercial collections are on your agenda, the OmniTRADE bar lift offers superb efficiency, safe operation and true flexibility. The OmniTRADE benefits from being a full width lift which means the lift hopper plate can be easily lowered for hand-loading and bulky collections. The OmniTRADE is ideal for commercial charge-by-weight operations and, is fully compatible with Terberg’s certifiable dynamic weighing and RFID solution. Smooth controlled lifting, minimal overhang and a robust design make the OmniTRADE an ideal choice for trade container collections and – is available in full width or narrow versions.
For more details on the ‘Omni’ bin lifts and our weighing products, please contact: email@example.com 01925 484000
LEADING THE CHARGE
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The pride was etched across the faces of all those on the Dennis Eagle stand at IFAT last May. There, for the world to see, was our new baby: the all-electric eCollect. But this was more than just unveiling a new product: this was a genesis moment. Our first all-electric vehicle, starting a new line of RCVs that will surely grow and could potentially dominate the market place one day. So it was vital we got it right from the outset. “We’ve been working on this vehicle for many years,” said Managing Director Kevin Else. “We’ve planned its development, its unveiling and its introduction by setting ourselves a timeline, and we’re on schedule. The eCollect went to the Pollutec show in France at the end of November and it will go into production in the UK in late 2019. And it will be ready. “It is currently undergoing more trials across Europe to optimise its battery-management software and we’re retesting all the components from our suppliers specifically for use on this vehicle. Every part of it will have been re-approved for use on the eCollect.” To help ensure the vehicle’s reliability, it was decided to make minimal design changes. Apart from replacing the diesel engine with an electric drive system, the chassis, cab, body, lifts and even telematics systems are already widely used on our conventional trucks. This will also help provide drivers, crews and service teams with welcome familiarity. As it is targeted at urban collections, the eCollect will combine a rear-steer chassis, for greater manoeuvrability, with our unique narrow body, designed for greater efficiency in narrow streets.
Range is still the limiting factor for electric vehicles and several already on the market are only viable by virtue of being small. However, the eCollect is a 6x2 26-tonner. “The 6x2s are our biggest sellers,” explained Kevin Else. “We set out to provide operators with a genuine, viable zero-emissions alternative to their diesel RCVs and the best way to do that was to match their preferred vehicles like-for-like. “By targeting the biggest sector of our market, we can sell more but timing is crucial. We could produce hundreds of electric vehicles in 2020 and there are plenty of early-uptakers – raring to go – who would buy them. “But the infrastructure needed to operate whole fleets of electric vehicles is simply not going to be in place for some time. The facts are, we’re still going to need diesel vehicles for the foreseeable future and Dennis Eagle will be selling them. “Of course, we’re not the first to build an all-electric RCV but that was never our goal. The eCollect will be the very first fully-electric RCV designed by an original equipment manufacturer, with all the benefits that entails.” And so, many years after it was first conceived, our full-sized, all-electric RCV has finally become reality. A new vehicle has been born. The eCollect provides both a glimpse of the future and a viable emissions-free option for 2019. Welcome to the Dennis Eagle family.
PUTTING OUR VEHICLES TO THE TEST IN EASTLEIGH
“To get the best from a refuse collection vehicle you need to know exactly how it works and what its capabilities are,” said Waste Services Manager Andy Kendall. And, true to his word, Andy and his team at Eastleigh Borough Council took the time to thoroughly evaluate potential suppliers for a replacement fleet of waste and recycling vehicles earlier this year.
“We’d had a number of our existing vehicles operating since 2009 and they were nearing the end of their lifecycle,” he explains. “It’s never ideal when a large part of the fleet needs replacing at once, but this presented us with an opportunity to look at what was available on the market and assess the viability of a range of products from various suppliers.
Evaluating the options “As is the case with the procurement of any kind of goods or services, we were required to carry out a rigorous tender procedure. It included a scoring matrix that assessed the pros and cons of different products and configurations against a number of set criteria.” As well as members of the council’s waste and recycling team, fleet and workshop staff were also involved in the process. But what exactly were they looking for? “Of course cost is always a major factor,” said Andy. “However, this is just one aspect to consider. At the end of the day what really matters is the value for money that products will deliver over their entire lifecycle and this involves looking at different elements such as running costs, quality, repair and maintenance requirements and parts availability.
Thorough evaluation of potential vehicles were carried out by Eastleigh Borough Council says Andy Kendall, Waste Services
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“Ease of operation and rounds efficiency were also important considerations for us. So, when we’d narrowed down our options following the initial tender stage, we arranged to demonstrate vehicles so that our drivers and crews could put them to the test.
Eastleigh Borough Council’s new fleet take to the streets
Putting the products through their paces “It’s always a balancing act when it comes to getting the most from demonstrations – if you spread things too thinly to involve more people then you don’t get consistent feedback, so we decided to ask a couple of experienced crews to test and review the vehicles. This gave them an opportunity to get a good understanding of the workings and capabilities of the different features of the vehicles. “It was really important for us to keep the teams focused on aspects of the vehicles that were important to us as part of the trials. In some cases, the exact specification or configuration of the demonstration vehicles varied in some way from the end product we were looking to procure. Drivers and crews were made aware of this and given clear information about the specific elements to focus upon.
low-voltage, environmentally-friendly and lownoise electric OmniDEL E bin lifts, ensuring the quietest collections possible. So, just what was it that helped to clinch the deal? “The key to the successful procurement of a waste and recycling fleet is getting the right vehicles, with a loading system that best suits collection requirements,” said Andy. “We have an in-house maintenance team, and some of our workshop staff were involved in the procurement process. They ideally wanted vehicles that would be easy to maintain in
terms of servicing, with a readily accessible supply of spare parts if required. “One of the things that appealed about Dennis Eagle and Terberg is that they essentially offer a ‘one-stop-shop’. With so many different components making up a complete vehicle, having to deal with multiple suppliers would have made parts procurement a lot more time consuming, so having just one main point of contact undoubtedly helps to simplify the process.”
“It’s all very well carrying out testing but it is important to replicate the nature of the environment in which vehicles will eventually be operating to get a true indication of their capabilities.”
The verdict Dennis Eagle and Terberg both made it through the tender process and based on positive feedback from the product demonstrations, Eastleigh Borough Council placed an order for seven new complete vehicles. All on Dennis Eagle Elite 6 chassis, the Olympus Duos feature 3.3m3 CombiTD pods complete with Terberg’s light – yet robust – TLL360 side bin lift and removable pannier. The vehicles are also fitted with Terberg’s
“One of the things that appealed about Dennis Eagle and Terberg is that they essentially offer a ‘one-stop-shop’”
An ongoing dialogue “Both Dennis Eagle and Terberg had feedback forms, which we could complete to help highlight any queries or concerns we had about the products,” explained Andy. “They were very proactive and sales managers Melvyn Davies and Dan Foden would go out with the teams as part of the trials to answer any questions they had. This was an invaluable part of the process because, if demonstrations are supported by Service Engineers or Area Sales Managers, it helps the drivers and crews to understand the vehicles and get to grips with them more quickly.
“The last thing we want is for people to say that they don’t like a vehicle simply because they don’t fully understand how it is designed to work. If you are unfamiliar with a particular product it can sometimes be easy to dismiss it as being unsuitable for requirements when, in actual fact, it is often just a case of knowing how to operate it properly to get the best performance and functionality from it. “When the vehicles were delivered earlier this year we were keen for things to run as smoothly as possible during the early stages of deployment. So service engineers from Dennis Eagle and Terberg spent the first couple of days with us to help overcome any teething problems and have since continued to support our Fleet Services team and assist with any queries.”
“Engineers from Dennis Eagle and Terberg spent the first couple of days with us to help overcome any teething problems and have since continued to support our Fleet Services team.”
The low-voltage, environmentallyfriendly and low-noise electric OmniDEL E bin lifts ensure the quietest collections possible
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Fit for purpose The vehicles are being used for the collection of food waste, along with biweekly residual waste and dry mixed recycling collections. The removable pannier offers the council flexible food-pod loading options. The pods themselves feature a top discharge design, and so are able to tip the food collected into waste containers, rather than on the floor. “The Olympus Duos offered the most suitable configuration for the type of kerbside collection we operate,” said Andy. “While we could have opted for one type of vehicle for residual and dry mixed-recycling collections, with a smaller second vehicle for handling food waste, the Dennis Eagle products provided us with a single solution. This has obvious advantages in terms of value, efficiency and sustainability. “We specified the Terberg binlifts as they provide a number of benefits. These are the first electric binlifts we have used. From an operational point of view, crew members say they are as effective as our previous binlifts, which is a massive positive. The reduction in noise, however, is a really noticeable difference which is resulting in quieter collections for residents. We are also continuing to monitor fuel efficiency, and expect to see an improvement in due course.
A commitment to the environment With a reputation for innovations in waste collection methods, Eastleigh Borough Council was one of the first in the UK to introduce alternate weekly collections in 1996. And it is currently leading the way when it comes to recycling and reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emission in the region. Jason Light, Environment Strategy Lead at the council, explained: “As well as being one of the first councils in the country to start collecting waste and recycling on an alternate weekly basis, we were also an early-adopter when it came to collecting glass waste and are still the only area in our region to collect food waste – a service which we have been offering since 2004.
“Another feature of the vehicles is the DennisConnect telematics system. We’re just getting to grips with this but finding it particularly useful in terms of monitoring rounds-efficiency and fleet-performance. It’s helpful from a maintenance perspective too, as it’s designed to flag up any potential issues before they become a problem to keep the fleet running smoothly.” So, what happens to the waste and recycling once it is collected?
“The Olympus Duos offered the most suitable configuration for the type of kerbside collection we operate... the Dennis Eagle products provided us with a single solution.”
“We service nearly 56,000 households. This figure has increased over recent years due to new housing and is expected to grow by as much as a further third as more development takes place in the region. Materials collected are transported to two transfer stations located at Otterbourne in the north of the borough and Netley on the southern outskirts. Once deposited, they are then handled by waste disposal and recycling contractor Veolia. “Hampshire County Council is responsible for disposal arrangements. There will be much interest in government proposals for a deposit return scheme (DRS) covering plastic, glass and metal drinks containers outlined earlier this year. A further consultation on how this would work is expected but until we know the outcome of this, it is difficult to predict the future. It could have an impact on the type and quantity of materials we will be collecting... watch this space!”
down on baseline figures. This means we are exceeding the target of a 34 per cent reduction from 1990 levels by 2020 and are well on track to achieving a 56 per cent reduction by 2030 in accordance with the Climate Change Act. “This is a significant achievement, especially when you consider the increase in housing levels and population we have seen across the borough over recent years. “Waste and recycling vehicles are one of the biggest contributors to our carbon footprint and, we are always seeking new
ways to improve fuel consumption. Their size, along with the stop-start nature of operations, means that these vehicles typically achieve fewer miles to the gallon than other vehicles in our fleet. “Even a small percentage improvement in fuel consumption for each refuse collection vehicle can, therefore, make a massive difference across the board. And it is hoped that features, such as the electric bin lifts and telematics system, will contribute to a further reduction in fueluse and related emissions going forward.”
“Our recycling rate currently stands at 43 per cent, around five per cent higher than any of the other districts in our area. In addition, the latest GHG emissions report shows that we are 36 per cent
ARE YOU CONNECTED?
“ At launch, DennisConnect was installed in no more than 200 vehicles. Today, the system is fully operational and connected to 3,500 vehicles, with this number continuing to grow.”
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As Dennis Eagle workshops around the country continue to set new industry standards for first-time-fix rates and increasing vehicle uptime, it’s a good time to lift the lid on the constantly developing system underpinning this success: DennisConnect. It was developed specifically for Dennis Eagle RCVs with the aim of increasing vehicle uptime by remotely diagnosing faults. Since its launch in 2015, DennisConnect has continued to broaden its scope and now offers fleet operators numerous benefits, resulting in cost-savings and increased vehicle productivity. And just as it has grown in functionality, so too has it grown in popularity: at its official launch in 2015, the system was installed in 200 vehicles but today it is fully operational in 3,500 vehicles and this number continues to grow rapidly. In fact, DennisConnect is now factoryfitted as standard to all our chassis’ and bodies during the production process. And this creates a win-win situation. First and foremost, operators benefit from significantly improved fleet management. But with a large number of connected vehicles on the road – more than any other manufacturer – Dennis Eagle technicians can learn quickly about both the performance of our products and our customers’ needs. To briefly recap on how the telematics system works, all the key components of the vehicle communicate directly to the vehicle CANbus, including the engine, drivetrain, hydraulic systems, electrical systems – and Terberg binlifts too. Data is collected on how different components are performing, what the whole vehicle is doing and even how the driver is driving. And this is processed and transmitted to officebased computers and staff. Any urgent issues it identifies trigger alerts for staff and the driver – and even the workshop and stores. But with so much data collected and such a pro-active, real-time communication system in place, this is just the start of the process of learning about a component, a vehicle, similar products, whole fleets and their operations.
And it enables a whole new approach to fleet management. A holistic approach. Kurtis Campbell, Project Controller at Dennis Eagle, is a keen advocate of the DennisConnect system. “I was first introduced to DennisConnect in 2016 and was immediately impressed by its ability and potential to develop fleet management. For fault reporting alone, the system has helped increase our first-time-fix rates from 74% to 85.9%. “I’m proud of it and I’m really excited to see just how far we and our customers can take it. Fault diagnosis, smarter maintenance scheduling, compliancy and monitoring driver performance have been well-documented with telematics systems. But in less than four years, DennisConnect has developed a more joined-up approach, introducing smarter fleet management and more streamlined operations. The system also connects to field service engineers so when a problem occurs on the road it’s not just the nearest engineer who is sent to fix it but the nearest with the right tools, parts and skills for the job. Analysis of vehicle components enables engineers to predict when something, such as a brake pad, is going to wear out so it can be replaced before it becomes a problem. And defect trends are also spotted, so that while engineers are tasked with addressing the source of the problem, preventive maintenance can be performed on other vehicles – even vehicles in different fleets. DennisConnect also acts as a platform for further optional telematics modules designed to increase operational performance by tackling common industry problems. The DennisConnect Waste Operator module enables the optimisation of vehicle operation. With full vehicle tracking, activity is plotted on satellite maps, raster maps and Google Street Level views, including stop-starts, compaction cycles and lift counts. Rounds can be analysed and redrawn for detailed operational efficiency, remote pressure adjustments can be made and management reports run for all operator functions.
Real-time vehicle tracking allows Dennis Eagle to allocate the closest engineer with the most suitable skills for repair.
The DennisConnect Fuel Saver module has been shown to provide significant savings by increasing fuel efficiency. This combines physical modifications, such as revised engine parameters to match the duty cycle, with EcoCoaching through which drivers are given a new insight into how they can reduce fuel consumption. One user of the DennisConnect system is Worcester City Council. Its waste collection teams had not used telematics for fleet management before. But after recognising the potential efficiency savings, the council decided to trial DennisConnect on three vehicles in its waste management fleet. The result was a dramatic improvement in efficiency. In fact, DennisConnect even enabled the council to reduce its fleet size. When it was first fitted, Worcester was performing 10 daily refuse rounds with one additional vehicle and crew used to pick up overspill, making 11 rounds in total. But after the data from DennisConnect was analysed, the operations were reviewed and the council was able to sideline two vehicles. They had been scheduled for replacement, each at a cost of £180,000, meaning the council saved £360,000 in capital costs and also recouped the residual value of the vehicles by selling them.
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Kevin McFeeley, Environmental Operations Manager at Worcester City Council, has been a convert to DennisConnect ever since. “It was eye-opening for the team here to see just how much data the system can collect and how helpful it can be,” he said. “After doing some initial tracking we looked into route optimisation. We practically threw the old routes away, using the DennisConnect system to plan completely new ones, which helped to increase our efficiency.” In addition to the vehicle savings, the council projected a further £30,850 saving as a result of reduced fuel costs, maintenance and tyre replacements. “The money we saved from reducing our fleet size has, in turn, helped us upgrade our older vehicles,” he said.
“Driver performance is an important aspect of fleet management and something that can be regularly analysed to maintain or improve vehicle operation.”
“Our modern fleet is helping us save costs through progressive fuel efficiency and a reduced rate of maintenance – all while producing fewer emissions.” Vehicle performance tracking is another feature that has contributed to savings for the council. Kevin said: “One day we had an engine alert come through to our monitoring system, courtesy of DennisConnect. We pulled the driver over and it turned out water levels had drastically dropped because of a leak. “Had our driver kept going, the engine would have blown. Thinking back now, that alert saved us the costs of a blown engine, roadside vehicle recovery and the resulting downtime. “The system has improved things so much. We’ve since ordered three new Dennis Eagle vehicles, two with an upgraded 32-tonne capacity. Again, this decision was made off the back of information DennisConnect presented to us, telling us that on certain routes we could be collecting more waste before making trips to offload it. This decision is likely to help us save time, fuel and increase our productivity even further. “In general, DennisConnect has had a huge impact on the work we do here, I simply can’t fault it.”
FAULT CODE TO DE
ENGINEER ARRIVES WITH CORRECT PART
Development of DennisConnect is an ongoing process. It continues to evolve and will do so for many years to come. One of its latest features is the introduction a Garmin device, fitted in-cab and linked to the telematics system to enhance both safety and performance.
The Garmin also presents the driver with an electronic vehicle check to complete before they set off on a round. This not only uses an on-screen tick-box form but also a series of six near-field communication tabs (NFCs) which are activated when the driver holds the Garmin close to them.
The Garmin is a tablet, positioned to provide simple, direct and non-distracting realtime communication with the driver, such as messages to and from the operator’s back office or from the vehicle’s in-built DennisConnect system.
Tabs are located at key positions around the vehicle – chosen by the customer – meaning the driver has to go to these positions and can’t just fill in the tick-box safety check from the cab. The Garmin can also have a camera function so helpful pictures of faults can be included on the form.
Communication with the back-office uses the JobTrack component of DennisConnect which is based on a unique property reference number system (UPRN). This enables messages specific to individual customers to be sent, such as ‘no collection due to nonpresentation of bins’, or broader advice, such as changes to routes. Messages from DennisConnect’s telematics system can also be sent to both the driver and back office, such as advice on the development of faults or on the quality of driving which is constantly assessed and scored.
Dennis Eagle customers are already reaping the benefits after the Garmin device was launched in September. Among them is Worcester where Kevin McFeeley, once again, is full of praise for the development. “We’re working closely with Dennis Eagle on JobTrack at the moment,” he said. “Essentially, the system allows far more interconnectivity with our fleet drivers. A touch-screen display is placed in the driver’s cab and through real-time communication, fleets can be advised if they’re needed in a particular area.
VEHICLE BACK ON ROAD FIRST TIME
“If one of our guys is having difficulty on a particular route, we can send an alert to other drivers in the area. I’m hoping to get this installed for all our vehicles soon.” And Kurtis Campbell is already looking ahead to numerous other fleet management possibilities. He said: “With the recent development of our DennisConnect Application Programming Interface (API), which enables DennisConnect to speak with other fleet management systems, these are very exciting times!” It all suggests that we, our customers and DennisConnect are only at the start of a remarkable journey.
“Our modern fleet is helping us save costs through progressive fuel efficiency and a reduced rate of maintenance – all while contributing less CO2 to the environment.”
PUTTING WASTE IN ITS PLACE... Kerbloader - The clear choice for ®
‘segregated at source’ kerbside collections.
Multiple compartments for collection of all types of dry recyclables and food waste Up to 33 cubic metre total body volume with Payloads ranging from 3800-4665Kgs* Bi-lateral loading allows collection from both Nearside and Offside Auto Plastic/Can & Card Press systems for greater efficiency
For more information visit www.terbergmatec.co.uk *depending on final specification
Terberg Matec UK, Highgrounds Road, Worksop S80 3AT 01925 484 000
TERBERG DEALS WITH WEIGHTY MATTERS
Life’s full of anomalies but one that’s been bugging the waste and recycling industry for a long time is why UK operators are paid to collect commercial waste by volume but pay to dispose of it by weight.
The simple but effective system has been available for some years but it has taken a while to catch on, mainly because in the past disposing of waste in landfill was cheap. But, as landfill prices have risen dramatically, the incentive to weigh bins has grown.
It means customers with light bins may pay more than they need to for collections while collecting heavy bins could leave operators out of pocket. So waste management companies have increasingly been turning to Terberg Matec UK for help by utilising the Terberg dynamic bin weighing solution.
Ian Warren, Terberg’s Weighing and Data Manager in the UK, explained: “We’ve been weighing bins for a long time and our experience in this area is quite extensive. The VDH9013 system superseded our existing product and was launched back in 2013.
Terberg’s VDH9013 system automatically records data from bins fitted with radio frequency identification chips (RFID). It includes date, time, location (by GPS) and, bin ID number. The bin is weighed by integrated load cells as it is hoisted, so it doesn’t slow the operation down. And that data is automatically added to the record so there is no information for the driver or crew to input.
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The development of the VDH really allowed us to think about how we could offer a complete package – essentially, bin lifts that are specifically designed to seamlessly accept our weighing solution without compromising operations. The impact has been significant with more and more clients seeing the potential and benefit of integrated weighing.
“The Terberg OmniTRADE lift has a great reputation for being a reliable commercial container collection bin lift but what most people don’t realise is that the OmniTRADE is actually designed to optimise the performance of the weighing system as well as being a heavy-duty bar lift. “The VDH system uses stainless steel load cells which are incredibly robust. They’re the best on the market and can stand up to 6,000kg of pressure. But they’re also very good at avoiding damage which is the Achilles’ heel of so many bin-weighing systems.” Of course, the benefit of having a Terberg lift fitted with Terberg weighing means that the whole solution is supported by our extensive and experienced Aftersales support function. “The system is also extremely accurate,” added Ian.
“It weighs each bin around 30 times within half a second – both going up and down – to calculate gross and tare weights to calculate the net weight – the weight of waste tipped into the vehicle.
Terberg says its bin-weighing systems are cost-effective over the lifetime of the lift but smart operators are using the system for more than just ensuring both they and their customers get a fair deal.
“Unlike most companies in this market, we self-verify each system before it leaves us. It saves what can be a long wait getting Trading Standards to verify it. Then, it doesn’t need to be re-verified until something changes, such as the lift going for repair. But we do recommend weekly checks and if it does need re-verifying we can do this on-site to minimise down time.”
“Some operators are offering a simple payby-weight model while others are using it for profitability monitoring – identifying customers with heavy bins so they can upsell additional services or encourage them to use an alternative waste collector,” said Ian. “Councils are also using our system in marketing campaigns. They provide incentive
B&M use bin-weighing for accurate pricing Terberg bin-weighing equipment has been used by Bagnall and Morris Waste Services since 2016 and it’s been invaluable, says Assistant Transport Manager Andy Eames. “We have about 16 vehicles with it at the moment and we’ve used it to eradicate over-weight bins,” he explained. The company, based in Wirral, offers a recycling-led solution to business trade waste collection over the length and breadth of the UK and Ireland too. Its customers include several nationwide operations and facilities management companies and, as well as trade waste collection, it offers specialist services, such as hazardous waste and WEEE collections and secure shredding. “We don’t use a pay-by-weight model – that wouldn’t work for us at the moment,” explained Andy.
schemes, rewarding householders for recycling more and sending less to landfill.” And Ian believes the future of bin-weighing could soon take a dramatic upturn. “As more operators start using the pay-byweight model, more heavy bins are ending up with local authorities because operators have dropped them as unprofitable. Some councils are already monitoring commercial waste collections, so they can start charging appropriately when the time is right. And that could be in the next 12 months or so.”
“In hotel chains, for instance, one hotel might be overweight while another was underweight but the contract is organised centrally so we have to take the rough with the smooth. “But through the bin-weighing equipment, we have two years of figures under our belts now so we are able to negotiate prices more accurately. And we have already been able to remove heavy bins that were simply costing us money to collect.” And B&M has been so pleased with both the hardware and software, they’ve ordered more. “We’ve more vehicles on order at the moment – all will be fitted with the Terberg bin-weighing system – and we’re also embarking on a retro-fitting programme,” added Andy. “Not only has bin-weighing been invaluable to us, but our Terberg lifts have also been extremely reliable. We haven’t had a single equipment failure.”
PROVIEW HITS THE ROAD IN THE USA
Eureka Recycling from Minnesota are using the ProView with a Pac-Tech automated side loading body
Aimed specifically at markets in the USA and Canada, the ProView cab was officially unveiled by our North American subsidiary Dennis Eagle Inc. at WasteExpo 2018, which took place in Las Vegas. The ProView is based on the popular and highly acclaimed Elite 6 and offers customers on the continent the best and safest visibility in class. Just like its UK counterpart, the high-performance cab is built to operate in tough conditions, with an ergonomic design specifically engineered to provide the highest levels of direct driver visibility, as well as excellent in-cab comfort. At 17 inches from ground to step, the ProView is the lowest entry cab on the US market. Its flat, unobstructed walk-through design helps to reduce leg and back strain for operators, while fewer dash-mounted switches and a
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telescopic and tilting steering wheel with unrivalled steering radius make for simple and comfortable operation. The ProView is scheduled to go into production in 2019 and will initially be available in a 6x4 configuration with dual control and left-hand steer options in diesel. And we will also be offering CNG variants. Customers will also benefit from aftermarket support provided by a network of wellestablished vocational truck dealers and service centres. The first models went on trial earlier this year and have been extremely well received, with great feedback from drivers and owners. Minnesota-based Eureka Recycling currently has three in its fleet, and we caught up with Director of Fleet Operations David Weidenfeller to find out more.
“Based in the Twin Cities of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, Eureka Recycling’s mission is to demonstrate that waste is preventable, not inevitable. We operate on a non-profit basis and are the only organisation in Minnesota to specialise in zero waste, with our services, programmes and policy work all aimed at presenting solutions to the social, environmental and health problems caused by waste. “With annual recycling operations worth $15-million, we have provided kerbside and apartment recycling services and advocacy since 2001 and have a wide range of initiatives designed to prevent waste through encouraging reuse, recycling, reduction, composting, producer responsibility and more.
WCA in Houston, Texas are running one of the first ProView models
“These initiatives provide more than 100 jobs for individuals who demonstrate our shared mission in the work they do, and through this work we aspire to help individuals, organisations and communities understand the significance of zero-waste and how to achieve their own zero-waste goals. “Regulations on the transportation industry are becoming more important than ever in the United States, with new compliance laws being revised and updated annually. Road safety issues continue to be a vital consideration in relation to trash and recycling collections, and this was a factor behind our decision to trial the ProView cabs.
residential routes, as it allows you to see the surrounding environment from many different angles, which enhances efficiency as well as safety. “Feedback from our drivers has been extremely positive. The space in the cab has been another real benefit – our drivers spend up to 10 hours-a-day in the truck, so anything that helps to enhance their comfort during this time is a real plus point, contributing to a better working environment.”
“One of the biggest differences between the ProView and existing cabs in our fleet is the visibility it offers.”
“One of the biggest differences between the ProView and existing cabs in our fleet is the visibility it offers. This is especially helpful for
THE FAB FIVE Looking for a perfect body? Well, we can’t offer you a six-pack but from the home of the gods – Olympus – come five different bodies, one of which we believe will be perfect for you. How can we feel so confident? Simply, because the robust Olympus body range is nothing but versatile with a model to suit every requirement a 21st century waste and recycling operation could have. The range is specifically engineered to fit on the Elite 6 chassis but is equally compatible with chassis from other manufacturers. The full-sized bodies – up to 27m3 – are available in two widths, while the innovative design and unique, single-piece construction help keep weight to a minimum to maximise payload. And, as you’ll see, the entire range is built with operational efficiency in mind which boosts its environmental credentials.
Olympus The classic Olympus body on which the rest of the range is based is ideal for collecting residual waste or dry mixed recycling so it is widely used for alternate weekly collections of different waste or recycling streams. And for green waste, simply switch off the compaction mechanism. Compatible with 40 types of binlift, it can also be adapted to handle large trade waste containers, domestic wheelie bins or – if left open-backed – bin bags.
Stop engine before entering 855370B/1
If you have to tackle restricted access on collection rounds, the Olympus Mini rear-loading RCV is designed to help. With a width of two metres, the Mini has exceptional manoeuvrability, making it equally suited for use in tight, cluttered urban streets and narrow rural lanes. It can handle domestic, organic and recycling materials and bins ranging from 80 to 1,100 litres. And the body size ranges from 6-8m3, meaning whatever your waste stream, the Mini will still pack a punch.
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Olympus Twin Pack When recyclables are separated at the kerbside you need them to stay separated and so the Olympus Twin Pack is not only designed to collect two different waste streams on the same round but also safeguard against cross-contamination. From general refuse to dry mixed-recycling, glass, plastics, paper and cardboard or green-waste streams, it reduces the number of collection rounds required and – displaying outstanding efficiency – it can empty up to three wheelie bins at once in its 65:35 split configuration.
Olympus Duo If you need to collect multiple separate wastestreams in one round, the Olympus Duo is designed for you. The main body’s compacting mechanism makes it ideal for handling general household waste or dry, mixed recyclables. But what makes the Duo one of the most useful vehicles in the marketplace is the separate, non-compacting pod. You can choose between a top discharge pod – widely used for food waste – or a side discharge pod which is popular for glass collections.
Olympus One Pass For the maximum efficiency of your rounds, the Olympus One Pass lets you collect three different types of waste at once, saving time, reducing distance travelled and maximising fuel efficiency. The One Pass features two separate compacting bodies – each with its own tailgate and independent operating system – for compactible waste streams that must be kept apart. And a self-contained top or side-discharge pod allows the simultaneous collection of a third, noncompactible waste stream, such as food or glass.
JJâ€™S AMAZING COATS OF COLOUR
Paint Production Manager, John Johnson, with some of his trusted team
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When Henry Ford launched the Model T Ford he famously said customers could have it any colour they wanted as long as it was black. By keeping variations to a minimum, he realised he could keep costs down and sell more cars. He obviously knew what he was talking about as the orders came flooding in and he sold 15 million Model Ts. Today, Dennis Eagle’s order books are also bulging, yet customers have a lot more colours to choose from. Wouldn’t it be better to paint them all black too? “Claret and sky blue might be good,” said Dennis Eagle’s Paint Production Manager John Johnson. You have to excuse him. He’s a lifelong Aston Villa fan as well as a Dennis Eagle stalwart who’s spearheaded numerous changes in our paint operations, leading to what he believes is the best paint job on the market. In a minute, he’ll back that up but first, meet JJ, as he’s widely known. The ultimate Brummie. “I was born in Great Barr which, for anyone who doesn’t know Birmingham well, is on the north-west fringe of the city. I first started working for Dennis-Eagle in 2000 at their Aldridge Service Centre, a few miles north of Birmingham. “We did the refinishing, working on all sorts of vehicles – from fire engines to refuse collection trucks – and we were turning out about 18 units a week, which was pretty good at the time. “In fact, it was only going to be a year’s work when we originally started but we were that good at what we were doing that they gave us more and it went on and on, lasting for around 10 years in the end. At that point, in 2010, they asked me to come over to the Warwick factory to help set up a new paint facility and the project ‘M’ team was started. “Today, I still live in Great Barr – not far from where my dad lived, on the same road.” And it’s just 15 minutes up the A34 from Villa Park. Is that a coincidence?
“I do love my football,” he confessed. “I always have done. It’s the competition, the excitement and – with Villa – the sense of belonging to one big family. “It does come second to my own family, of course – though they might dispute that on occasions. I’ve a wife and three daughters. Two are grown up now but we still have a 16-year-old at home. And my dad, who passed away a year ago, was my hero. He was a service manager – known as ‘The Legend’ – and he was actually my boss for a while!
“The challenge for me is to be the best, to do the best I can and then to find ways of doing it even better.”
“I was 50 in October and me and my wife went to Krakow in Poland. We drove to Folkestone, then through France and Germany. There was plenty to see on the way and we got to spend some quality time together. I like cars and I like driving. I can’t sit still, doing nothing. That’s not me.” And there’s another side to JJ you need to know: the entrepreneur. Buying and selling, mainly on eBay these days. “I love it,” he explained. “I used to restore and sell old pedal cars but eBay’s the real hobby now. I did a course at work a few months’ back and had to prepare a PowerPoint presentation for it; I chose to do mine on buying and selling on eBay.” So, we have the family man, the Villa fan, the entrepreneur … but what does all this have to do with painting RCVs? “In 2010, Dennis Eagle decided the time was right to step up their painting operations,” explained JJ.
had never been enough room for one. But in 2010 the company decided it had to find room for one as paint was becoming increasingly important to the overall quality of the finished product and customer satisfaction. “I came to the Warwick site in August 2010 and set up the new facility from scratch with the project ‘M’ team, starting off with a few trials to get it right and then introducing shot-blasting into the full production process,” explained JJ. “The technical side of things all went very well but, as it turned out, there was much more to it than that, a lot of careful managing to get everyone working in the same way. It was a big change for some of them but I love change. “The challenge for me is to be the best, to do the best I can and then to find ways of doing it even better. I really want this paint operation to be the best in the industry and I do take it personally – and so does the company. And to achieve that, to continue to improve, you’ve got to embrace change. “I’m not afraid to try something new – in fact, we’re always trying something new here. Sometimes, things work. Sometimes, they don’t. But you learn from them and move on. You can’t be stubborn, especially not in management. “We work very closely with our paint suppliers Granlyn. They keep an eye on what’s changing in the market and between us we have a go at changing the way we do things or the paints we use. It’s all about improving.” But the challenges of managing the paint division were significant, as JJ recalls.
Team player JJ enjoys the challenge of his work
“It was clear that things were going very well for Dennis Eagle and I felt really proud to be part of it and to have contributed to that success.”
“Paint and paint application technology had progressed – the quality of finishes, the durability and protection it offered had steadily improved over the years. The company obviously needed to keep up to date but to get the best results from modern paints and technology, they needed a shotblasting facility.” Shot-blasting cleans the metal at a microscopic level and provides the best surface – or “substrate” as the paint industry calls it – for the paint to bind to. At Dennis Eagle, surfaces to be painted are shotblasted to a recognised standard, called SA 2.5. Dennis Eagle had not had that kind of facility at Warwick in the past, partly because there
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“Going back to the new facility, the lads I brought here from Aldridge were all highly skilled and worked really hard. They were focused and had the same outlook as I did because that had been the culture where we’d worked before: do the very best you can. “Some of the others we employed needed to learn new skills and we had to do a lot of retraining before I could get them all pulling together in the right direction. Now, we’ve all got the same high standards and the same outlook. “And I really do believe we are the best team in the company.” JJ also had to set up new processes in the Blackpool factory where the company assembles its cabs – the chassis, bodies, hoppers and Beta 2 bin lifts are all made in Warwick.
“There were a lot of changes that we wanted to make in Blackpool too but people said it could never be done,” said JJ. “My colleague Craig Williams was integral to the whole operation and together – with the help and support of others – we did make them. Very successfully. “What we introduced was single line production, which is more efficient and easier to manage. The single line flow means you have a specific amount of time to do your job before passing the product on to the next person. “It’s a system tried and tested in all sorts of manufacturing processes and it has worked very well for us.” Now, he says, the quality of the painted product has never been higher. The company offers a large range of colours. All the paints used are “twin-packs” incorporating a paint and a hardener. The brand used by Dennis Eagle is Glasurit, made by BASF. And every paint job is checked. Again and again. “When something here is painted we have to achieve 100 microns of paint,” said JJ. “We run checks all the way using elcometers, special gauges designed to accurately measure the DFT – that’s the dry film thickness – of paint. Then, when the vehicle gets its pre-delivery inspection – its ‘PDI’ – our work is checked again.
work because, collectively, we’ll make them work. “What we proposed this time was to split the single line production. The result is, we now have a hopper line and a body line so we can paint two hoppers and two bodies at once. To be able to do this, we needed more space and a second booth but we got that by moving the chassis painting to what everyone at Warwick calls Unit 2. “We made the move in July 2017 and kicked off with 24 vehicles in the first four days. The change was, once again, a big success.”
“I’m certain our’s is the best paint job in the market and we get plenty of comments to that effect.” So, an awkward question here: if change is a vital ingredient of success, how long can Dennis Eagle count on JJ being here? Or, to put it another way, like Lee Marvin in Paint Your Wagon [pardon the pun!], was JJ also born under a wandering star? “Well, I do get approached but I’m happy here and respected,” said JJ.
“I want my team to provide the best paintwork in the industry and I want be part of the best business in the industry. And here – at Dennis Eagle – I am. And since joining up with Terberg, we’ve progressed even further. It’s made our business even stronger. “There are 32 people working in the paint division and we are a great team. My boss, Terry New, gives me the reins and supports me 100 per cent. It is the best company I’ve ever worked for. It’s like a family business, only massive.” A couple of strong themes have emerged here, themes that run through both work and play. There’s the entrepreneurial spirit, always eager to try something new, to improve, to do better, to grow, the need to construct, to make something, like so many Brummies before him. Then there’s family, be it the paint division team, the whole Dennis Eagle workforce, the Villa or, of course, his own kith and kin. Strong bonds, familiarity, mutual support, identity, the feeling of belonging to a strong group. These are the hallmarks of family. And, in a nutshell, these are the qualities that make JJ … well, JJ.
“I’m certain our’s is the best paint job in the market and we get plenty of comments to that effect. We also get very few complaints from customers.” But success in the factory, of course, breeds success in the market place and this in turn created new pressures to improve efficiency once again so that production could keep up with demand. “It was clear that things were going very well for Dennis Eagle as a company and I felt really proud to be part of it and to have contributed to that success. But I knew that it meant the next challenge was going to be just around the corner,” grinned JJ. “A year ago we were painting 19 vehicles in four days in our division and they said they wanted to do 24 in four days. So I went away, scratched my head and thought about it.” Time for another change, he decided. “I called the lads in – the co-ordinators – and we sat down and talked about it. I had an idea of what we could do but I wanted their input on it. We’re a team and I value every one of them. We all get on very well together and everyone pulls together. So when it comes to changes, if we make them together, they’ll
The next change is just around the corner for JJ
SUPPLIER FOCUS Granlyn Specialist Coatings Ltd
Q: What does every Dennis-Eagle truck made for the past 12 years have in common with an eight-foot Italian tortoise, a Bajan monkey and a Shakespearean knight with a bad back? A: They have all been given the chance to fulfil their roles by Granlyn Specialist Coatings.
Granlyn has been our sole paint supplier for the last 12 years, working with our paint division to provide every colour under the sun at the behest of our customers. “They often ask for their own, bespoke colours to be made and our in-house team at our base in West Bromwich can formulate and mix whatever colour they need as soon as they place their order,” said Managing Director Craig McDonald. “Our first encounter with Dennis Eagle was a paint demonstration at their Aldridge site in 2006. Twelve years later, we are still their sole paint supplier.” Indeed, Granlyn’s reputation for quality service has led them to become the biggest independent distributor of paints to the UK commercial vehicle industry.
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And Craig knows a thing or two about paint; he joined the business as a sales rep in 1978 – just two years after it was set up – and eight years ago he bought the company. “Eight years, one month and 25 days,” said Craig (at the time of the interview). “I eat, sleep and breathe paint and Granlyn’s. It’s been a hard slog but we have recorded eight consecutive years of significant growth and we now have 50 staff. “We work with all the leading paint manufacturers and supply paints for almost any type of surface you can think, from concrete floors to window frames, boats, jets, bars and restaurants. But around 50-60% of our sales are in the automotive industry – trucks, cars and specialist vehicles.” And in 40 years, the nature of paint has changed considerably.
“It’s all down to technology: the speed of drying is much less than it used to be. In the old days, a customer would apply three coats of paint – now it’s one, or maybe one-and-ahalf. “They used to refer to ‘the fag’ – that’s what the painters called the flash-off time, or the time it takes for the solvent to come off before they could apply the next coat. In fact, they could probably have smoked 10 fags in the time it took then. But not today. “We keep an eye on developments in paint technology – the manufacturers spend a fortune on R&D – and if we see something that might be of interest to Dennis Eagle, we work closely with them and their paint manufacturer, BASF, to introduce it. “Dennis Eagle’s paint products have changed two or three times since our first job. We’ll test the new paint with them and go live on a couple of vehicles with it. “The result is we’ve helped speed up their priming time and reduce their baking time from 45 minutes to 30. This has not only led
to a considerable increase in throughput in their paint department but has also helped cut costs.”
“Our first encounter with Dennis Eagle was a paint demonstration at their Aldridge site in 2006. Twelve years later, we are still their sole paint supplier.” Of course, it’s not all about costs. The durability of paint has improved massively during Craig’s career. “The paints may be potted here but they are all either made in the USA or Europe. That guarantee, however, is a mark of how confident the paint makers are in the quality of their products.”
The future for Granlyn is more of the same, says Craig McDonald. But in a new departure that may grow to be very significant, Granlyn is supplying the UK and Europe with a new range of sprayed metal paints which can be applied to almost any surface. The design world can’t get enough of them – especially for chic bars and restaurants of London. But they are increasingly used in private, one-of-a-kind jobs too. “The monkey statue now has a bronze finish and was sent to Barbados, the tortoise is at an Italian villa … and we’ve just done a cocker-spaniel for a garden in Reading,” said Craig. “It was the Royal Shakespeare Company that contacted us. One of their actors had suffered a slipped disc and couldn’t wear the real armour because of the weight of it. So we coated one-eighth inch plastic armour with our metallic paint – and it looked perfect.”
“It was the Royal Shakespeare Company that contacted us. One of their actors had suffered a slipped disc and couldn’t wear the real armour because of the weight of it. So we coated oneeighth inch plastic armour with our metallic paint – and it looked perfect.”
Dennis Eagle Ltd. Heathcote Industrial Estate, Warwick CV34 6TE 01926 458 500
Dennis Eagle and Terberg Matec UK are proud to launch the first edition of the Eagle Eye Magazine, packed full of exisiting stories from acr...
Published on Dec 18, 2018
Dennis Eagle and Terberg Matec UK are proud to launch the first edition of the Eagle Eye Magazine, packed full of exisiting stories from acr...