An industry first, Aggregate Industries’ Contracting Division has launched a revolutionary new extendable chip spreader (chipper), a machine set to redefine health and safety standards across the highways sector.

07.08.2018
 

In a trail-blazing move to bring outdated chipper technology into the 21st century, the new KS12-16 ExtendaChip Spreader has been developed in conjunction with engineering firm Pavemac to make the chip spreading process much safer, more reliable and efficient.

As the first machine of its kind for the industry, the new state-of-the-art chipper has been designed to be uniquely extendable, with a range of 12ft to 16ft wide carriageways - crucially removing the need for multiple chippers on site and speeding up chip spreading operations.

Other innovative features include; hydraulically driven tracks instead of wheels, eradicating the risk of runaways; improved hopper design so ‘load out’ height is reduced by 50% to provide 360 degree visibility and stability; and dashboard controlled automated calibration, that reduces manual adjustment requirements by the operator. What’s more, it can provide basic telemetry data to show idle time and hours worked.

Development of the new machinery is part of Aggregate Industries’ Contracting Division’s concerted efforts to raise health and safety standards in road surfacing following a serious incident in June 2016 involving a chipper and supply chain operative, that resulted in a fractured ankle and associated skin damage.

Paddy Murphy, Managing Director of Contracting Services at Aggregate Industries, commented: “To prevent such incidents from ever happening again, we’ve spent the last 18 months conducting root-cause analysis of chipper incidents and operations to identify ways that we can reduce or eradicate the safety risks to our employees. The results consistently highlighted the need to completely overhaul the chipper design.”

Primed to deliver sector-wide improvements in road surfacing, the KS12-16 ExtendaChip Spreader is due to be trialled on the Hampshire Highways Service Contract in August-September 2018. With the results collated and adjustments made, the extendable chipper will be available to the wider industry in Q4 2018.

Paddy adds: “By truly engaging; and collaboratively sharing knowledge and expertise with our supply chain partners, we’ve demonstrated the extraordinary things that can be achieved. We’re incredibly proud to have successfully designed out the majority of the health and safety risks that are associated with chipper operations. The KS12-16 ExtendaChip Spreader has set the new benchmark in best practice and will no doubt significantly raise standards across the industry for years to come.

“I’d like to thank all those involved in the project including our team at the National Plant Department, Southern Regional Employees & Safety Department, and special thanks to Craig Flowers and Ken Barrett (Aggregate Industries); John Finn and Keith Dearing (Pavemac) for their efforts in delivering this achievement.”

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