Waste management, plant hire, agriculture and demolition company, Shorts Group, has taken delivery of a new plant body from Andover Trailers, the latest build in a long-standing relationship dating back more than two decades.
The bespoke built plant body is mounted to a 32-tonne 8×2 Scania chassis and represents a new addition to the company’s commercial vehicle fleet, specifically operating within the plant hire side of the business.
Matthew Campling, Commercial Director at Shorts Group, says of the latest asset: “Andover simply deliver a superior unit, with clever engineering and impeccable build quality. Ultimately, they are more reliable and robust than any off-the-shelf alternative you can get elsewhere.
“The fact we’ve only had four plant bodies from them in that time is a testament to how hard wearing they are. We were originally looking to replace our 10-year-old, 18-tonne DAF, but after a bit of TLC and a re-boarded deck it was just like having a new body, so we’ve taken the latest delivery as an addition to the fleet.”
The company also operates a 64-plate, 32-tonne Scania with a similar spec body to the new truck. All the vehicles feature Andover Trailers’ chassis-specific design, including its trademark low-profile deck, which is achieved by engineering the cross members to transect the body runners, rather than simply sitting on top.
The new plant body also features a double crank beavertail, connected to a pair of 2.5m long hydraulic power toe, knife-edged ramps. This combination creates a shallower load angle, helping to increase the variety of plant that can be carried. In addition, 10 pairs of lashing points on the deck ensure maximum load security, while a full working at height system and comprehensive LED lighting help to improve safety.
“What stands Andover Trailers apart from their competitors is the total service they deliver from start to finish – they get to know what you need as a business and offer comprehensive guidance on the build and how different chassis types will affect the body. It’s this attention to detail that has kept us coming back, you just don’t get that elsewhere,” adds Campling.
The new Scania joins a large 140-strong mixed commercial fleet across the four divisions in the group, ranging from vans through to waste collection vehicles. On the plant hire side of the business, the trucks operate out of Shorts Group’s two main depots in Milford and Ascot, mainly serving customers across Berkshire, Hampshire, Surrey and the surrounding counties.
On the road five and a half days a week, the new Scania is expected to clock up between 45,000 and 50,000 miles a year. As with the company’s previous Andover Trailers plant bodies, it is expected to stay in operation for at least 10 years.
A family run business, Shorts Group started life as a timber business in 1957, soon diversifying into site clearance, demolition, agriculture and waste management, before moving into plant hire in 2015.