In just two years Stuart Drummond Transport has added another 10 trucks to its fleet, expanding its capacity by 35 per cent to reach a total of 38 trucks.
Strong growth in demand for log cartage from the forestry sector in Nelson-Marlborough and the West Coast is behind the company’s multi-million dollar investment surge, which is also bringing employment spinoffs.
The company has increased its staff from around 40 in 2016 to more than 50, including an additional specialist mechanic in its Richmond workshop to help service the growing fleet.
“In the late 1980s the government had an incentive scheme for people to plant trees and many of those forests are now ready to be harvested, so we’re seeing a lot of private forests coming on stream,” explains Brodie Drummond, who recently became the company’s managing director following the retirement of his father and company founder, Stuart Drummond.
“We’re now carting in excess of 700,000 tonnes of logs a year and, with ongoing growth in demand, we are anticipating our biggest year yet.”
Among the company’s new acquisitions are five Freightliner Argosy trucks, primarily deployed in the Nelson Forests Ltd area to haul logs to local mills and ports. In the world of freight, these are truly state of the art vehicles, rated very highly for durability, power and performance.
“They really do have all the bells and whistles and the latest technology and they’ve got a very good payload – we’re running them at 36 tonnes. They are also way more fuel efficient and environmentally friendly than trucks of past years.”
For drivers, these new trucks are very safe and comfortable with sound proof cabs, leather interiors and the latest radio equipment.
“All our trucks have tablets so data on the loads and health and safety goes out live to our drivers. Our customers can also track every load.” Along with the Freightliner Argosy additions, Stuart Drummond Transport has added three new T659 Kenworth trucks.
These are very versatile, high performing vehicles that again deliver a superb standard of comfort and safety.
The very first truck that Stuart Drummond used to start the company with in 1985 was a Kenworth, so it’s a brand that continues to serve the company well. A couple of handy ‘around town’ European DAF trucks have also been added to round out the fleet.
Stuart Drummond Transport continues to operate the only self-loading HIAB in the NelsonMarlborough region, which can cart loads of 26.5 tonnes.
“We’ve just put a brand new state of the art self-loader on the road with a cabin and four-axle trailer.”
Health and safety is a key priority, with the company’s strong commitment reflected in its tertiary level ACC accreditation and ACC Fleetsaver gold standard status.
“We have a rachet system on our trucks, which is a lot safer than using racks.” All drivers receive ongoing training via a professional external trainer, Platinum Driver Training.
Among the company’s clientele are Tasman Forest Management, YS International, Nelson Forests, Robinson Forest Management, Laurie Forestry, Total Harvest Solutions and Ngai Tahu Forestry.
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