Priority TM’s new ‘Stubby’ truck is purpose-built for operation around the streets of London at just 4.5m, 2.2m shorter than that of a conventional impact protection vehicle.
Built by Bevan Group, the truck is fitted with a crash cushion and high-visibility light arrow board by Highway Care, and will operate from Priortiy TM’s Greenwich depot with early assignments including night-time maintenance to the Tower Bridge.
‘Stubby’, so called because of its short dimensions, is built on an 18tonne Iveco Eurocharge chassis powered by a 250hp six-cylinder Euro VI engine, and is compliant with London’s Ultra Low Emissions Zone regulations.
It also comes with several key safety features including beacon bars, a comprehensive array of 4G recordable and donwloadable safety cameras including two reversing cameras activated when the crash cushion is raised or deployed. The crash cushion absorbs rear-end impacts at speeds of up to 68mph and can be deployed at up to a travelling speed of 55mph.
‘Stubby’ is delivering cost and efficiency benefits to Priority TM. Where previously the firm had to use two vehicles for assignments, with one carrying the cones and the other the crew, it can now rely on just the one vehicle.
“Dual working remains the best practice in some circumstances. But its flexibility means the new vehicle can be used to undertake other jobs on a solo basis, without the need for a second. So of course, it has the potential to save us money,” said Duncan Crome, Priority TM Managing Director.
“Our new impact protection vehicle is not intended for operation on motorways or major trunk road schemes. Rather, its main role is as back-up for utilities work. We don’t need a full-sized wagon that’s 10 metres long and capable of carrying upwards of 200 cones.
“So it made sense to restrict its length, because if you try and drive a truck like that through central London you’re going to run into difficulties pretty quickly.
“At eight metres, the truck is still long enough to give us a decent-sized bed and cone wells from which to work. But it also makes it a lot easier to negotiate the traffic and narrow lanes within which we have to work.”
Priority TM is a long-standing customer of Highway Care but had not worked previously with Bevan Group: “I’ve been pleased and impressed with the way both companies have supported us,” Crome continued.
“I liked Bevan Group’s consultative approach to the design phase. Sales Director Roy Shelton and his team demonstrated reassuring attention to detail, and were prepared to consider any requests – if they couldn’t accommodate us, they’d invariably come back with an alternative suggestion.
“The truck is clearly very well built, which is encouraging given that we anticipate running it for at least 10 years, while round-the-clock breakdown cover by Bevan Group’s Aftercare Response provides added peace of mind. I took on this business in 2006 and have dealt with a variety of bodybuilders over the years, but I’d have no hesitation in describing Bevan Group as the best yet.”