Viridor invests in electric-drive material handlers for Scottish recycling plants

FOUR new Cat eMH24 electric-drive material handlers have been put to work at Viridor’s Bargeddie and Polmadie waste recycling plants.

The machines will be used to process large quantities of black bag waste to maximise the amount that can be recycled. The residual waste that is unable to be recycled will then be used to generate electricity to power the models.

The choice to purchase the machines called for Cat dealer Finning to devise a solution to ensure the necessary infrastructure was in place to provide a suitable electric power source at the remote recycling facilities.

Finning brought in Murray Cable, which is part of the Finning group of companies, to carry out the installation of the high-voltage cabling needed to power the machines. Accomplished in two weeks, the cable install was completed without disruption to the dayshift operation by working nights and weekends.

Cables were also installed in the workshop bay, so that engineers carrying out maintenance work on the machines had a dedicated area and power supply away from the busy processing area.

Features of the Cat eMH24 include programmed operator preferences for joystick functions, cab guard protection, and a rear and O/S camera system displayed on one large LCD display in the cab.

Paul Cairney, operations manager for Viridor (Bargeddie), said, “By operating these new Cat eMH24 electric-drive material handlers, we are expecting at least a 50% reduction in CO2 and operating costs. These state-of-the-art electric-drive Cat material handlers have a straightforward electric-drive motor and hydraulic pump that increases uptime and productivity while also lowering operating costs.

“Although it’s early days, I’m pleased to report the electrically driven machines have not missed a beat since they have arrived, and the service from the Finning team has been great.”

Chris Egan, who has over 20-years’ operating experience, added, “Compared to the standard diesel Cat MH3024, the new eMH24 electric-drive offers a significantly quieter operator environment, and the quick, very smooth hydraulic controls are a great improvement. With no refuelling required, and an exhaust gas-free machine inside the building, this is one of the best machines I’ve ever operated and definitely the way forward.”

Keith Perkins, account manager at Finning, commented, “We are committed to providing a full solution service, helping our customers overcome challenges to meet their objectives. Using our expertise, we were able to build the power-infrastructure required to run and safely maintain the eMH24s at the Bargeddie site, without impacting their operations.”