Dow Waste Management cleans up with new machine

Scott Freeman, business director at Case UK, Sheila Dow and Alistair Hodge strike a deal at this year’s ScotPlant

CUMBERNAULD-based Dow Waste Management purchased an F Series 721FXR waste wheel loader from Case, through their Scottish dealer Hodge Plant, at this year’s ScotPlant and the machine has already been put to work at Dow’s material recycling facility.

Dow director, Marshall Dow, told Project Plant that one reason the firm purchased the 14.5-tonne Case unit was Alistair Hodge himself. “I’ve got a lot of confidence in Alistair,” Marshall said. “He knows the industry very well, he will be able to support the machine and I can get him on the phone.”

Marshall continued, “To me, it’s not just the quality of the machine. It’s the quality of the back-up, it’s the quality of the person you’re buying it from and relationships are very important in this industry. In the plant hire game, it is actual relationships and people that make the big difference and that is fundamentally why I went for Case.”

While relationships are very important, the machine also needs to get the job done, which Marshall said the 721FXR could, calling it “well designed for waste applications”.

The machine features a windshield guard, front and rear light guards, a lift cylinder guard, metal wrapped hoses and front and rear bottom guards.

“The waste industry is very hard on machines, with the varying types of materials it is dealing with every day – things that just pop out the waste, bits of wood, steel, wire – it’s just a hassle so all the extra guarding is perfect.”

The machine will be used for a variety of jobs at Dow’s site. Marshall said, “It’s going to be used for loading lorries, moving waste and cleaning out bays.

“It could also be loading rubble and demolition material into the back of tippers. It is the right size to cope with the bays under our picking lines and enough to load lorries and move things in a quick manner.”

Marshall praised the unit’s “excellent manoeuvrability” within the tight areas of the transfer station. “The machine was bought because of its narrow frame, which works perfectly,” he said. “We have a lot of waste that comes into this site on a daily basis so we have to keep our feet clear so it’s constantly going around and clearing the ground, sweeping up the concrete floors, always tidying up and moving materials.

“Visibility is excellent, manoeuvrability is excellent and the handling on the hydraulics is very sensitive but reactive. It’s a comfortable machine to drive; driver comfort is very important – the driver has got to enjoy driving the machine.”

Dow Waste Management is a family-owned and run company offering waste management services including recycling, skip and bin hire, tipper hire and trade waste collection.

The family business has a history spanning over 40 years and entered the waste management sector in 2005 with the opening of its Cumbernauld recycling facility. In recent years, the company has started developing biogas through anaerobic digestion, a natural process whereby biomass is broken down by microorganisms in the absence of air.

Managing director, Sheila Dow, said she and Marshall have benefited from the longevity of the family business. “It came from our parents who had a plant hire company so our background knowledge is plant hire, haulage, tipper hire and that has evolved into what is today waste management,” she said.

Speaking on what makes Dow stand out, Sheila said, “About six years ago we decided to take the ethos that we were going to divert from landfill the maximum amount of tonnage as we could from the site here.

“The material that would go to landfill is now produced as refuse derived fuel (RDF) and we ship that from Grangemouth to combustion heat power plants in Europe. We’ve been doing that continually for six years and we’re very successful at it.”

Marshall added, “I think that actually being the first company in Scotland to put in a full recycling plant designed for making fuel and the first company in Scotland to successfully win a contract to supply direct to power stations in Europe and having our own license on our own dockside – that makes us stand out from the rest.”

The company is “very much driven” by what the Scottish Government has implemented in terms of the environment, Sheila said.

“They set targets, we’ve got targets that we have set ourselves and we’ve all got to aim for that goal. It’s for a better future,” she added.