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October 2005
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Executive Hire News › Archives › October 2005 › Executive Report : Executive news

Executive Report : Executive news

BLMA steps on to national stage

Founded nearly 60 years ago to represent ladder makers, the British Ladder Manufacturers’ Association (BLMA) is now welcoming members throughout the access industry to advance best practice and promote high standards of design and manufacture.
President David Walker states that the BLMA is responding to the recent Work at Height Regulations (WAHR) and points out that ladders are not banned under the new legislation. “Risk assessment and safe practice are critical components of WAHR and it is in these areas specifically that the BLMA offers training and advice. It runs nationally accredited training schemes for users, supervisors and managers.”
Another initiative is the recently published 40-page Leaning Ladder & Stepladder Users’ Guide, which covers employer and user responsibilities, the WAHR and the safe use of ladders and steps. A new web site is under development.

HSS buys Laois Hire Services

HSS has purchased Laois Hire Services, which has three depots in County Laois. The deal was struck after negotiations with owners Michael and Maureen Killeen, who will stay to run the business along with 42 employees at the branches in Portlaoise, Athy and Portarlington.
Established in 1992, the business has an annual turnover in excess of €6m. Its product range includes construction plant, diggers, dumpers and rollers.
“The company has benefited enormously from significant spending by the Irish government on the area’s infrastructure and from the resulting rapid growth in house building,” states HSS’ Mergers and Acquisitions Director, Kristin Hancock. “The area is a popular commuter belt for Dublin and there are numerous construction projects underway and in the pipeline to meet the demand for homes and facilities.”

HSE safety roadshow under way

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and the EEF, an organisation for manufacturers, are running a series of noise and vibration roadshows across Great Britain, until 18 November. At work, over 1.1m people are at risk from high levels of noise and about 1.7m are at risk from hand arm vibration (HAV). The Control of Vibration at Work Regulations came into effect in July, and noise regulations will be updated in early 2006.
The roadshows are designed to advise employers, health and safety advisors and safety representatives about the changes. Those attending will hear what the new regulations will mean in practice, get an insight into practical risk management, and find out how to arrange effective health surveillance for exposed employees.
For details, visit www.hse.gov.uk/vibration/events.htm.

LCH scores for Sky

The quick response of LCH Generators enabled television coverage of a recent Premiership football match to proceed without interruption. Sky Sports News made an out-of-hours call to LCH’s Portsmouth depot when its contractor, Film and Television Ltd, had problems with half of its 75kVA twin power pack at the game between Portsmouth and Aston Villa at Fratton Park.
The hirer responded with a generator set capable of supplying at least 75kVA to act as a standby. This had to be supplied on a trailer towed by a small vehicle due to the volume of vehicles in the car park behind the stadium. As a backup, LCH also provided an extra capacity 135kVA set. This proved invaluable, as the unlucky contractor’s other 75kVA set broke down shortly afterwards.
The standby generator provided power for all Sky Sports live feeds, lighting, sound and digital transmitting equipment for the whole evening.

Warsop Metrix becomes Fairport Construction

Sheffield-based Warsop Metrix has changed its name to Fairport Construction Equipment Ltd. It says it has recently strengthened its management team, which has been addressing hand arm vibration (HAV) and other issues affected by the Control of Vibration and Work Regulations, along with economy and longevity of equipment. The company’s product line-up includes pokers, concreting equipment, saws and pumps, and new additions are promised over the next few months.

Hire Supply opens in London

Six months after retaining the HAE Award as Hire Supplier of the Year, Hire Supply Company has opened a second operating base which will service the London area. Hire Supply has purchased a 4,500ft2 warehouse and office unit located at Apex Business Centre, Staples Corner.
The company’s recent success, which has seen turnover reach £2.9m, together with the announcement of the London Olympics in 2012, have prompted the £300,000 expansion programme. The company believes that the successful bid will see demand increase dramatically as construction work in Stratford and the surrounding areas gets underway.
The new site is situated close to M1 road links, which will allow the company to service the needs of hire businesses inside the M25. Dave Manning, who has more than 16 years experience in the hire industry, will be responsible for the day-to-day running of the operation.

Selwood updates vehicle fleet

Pump and plant rental company, the Selwood Group, has taken delivery of the first batch of new Renault Trafic 2700 vans as part of its £4m commercial vehicle fleet renewal programme. This has already seen the complete renewal of the hirer’s heavy truck fleet over the last four years.
“The Trafic was chosen because of its low operating costs and reliability,” comments Selwood’s Transport Manager, Nigel Smith. “All the vans have been fitted out with internal racking, hand wash facilities, first aid kits, fire extinguishers and lighting.” Selwood operates 90 vans that are used by field service engineers, who maintain the company’s hired plant and customers’ equipment.

Bright Rentex for Towerlight

Towerlight had cause for celebration at the Rentex exhibition in Maastricht, which ran from 22-24 September. The Italian lighting tower manufacturer, which is an associate company of GenSet plc and whose product range is featured in more depth on page 41, scooped a major order from the major European hirer, Pierre Boels, for its VT1 9m tower floodlight, during the Show. The VT1 has also just gained approval from RailTrack for use on the UK rail network.
EHN will give full details in next month’s issue, which will contain a comprehensive review of Rentex.

GroundsCare Hire News monitors hirers’ successes

The Autumn 05 issue of GroundsCare Hire News, our dedicated publication serving this growing hire market, is mailed with this issue of EHN. It reports on how local, regional and national hirers are succeeding by offering dedicated service as well as appropriate equipment to professional users and homeowners. It also focuses on new initiatives addressing the risk of hand arm vibration, and includes a full review of the Institute of Groundsmanship’s Saltex exhibition, held last month.

Jewson marks Atlas blade launch

Jewson, the builders merchant and tool hirer, is introducing Atlas diamond blades to its product offering. It is the result of close co-operation between Jewson and the abrasives manufacturer, Saint-Gobain. Made to the EN 13236 standard, the 300mm diameter blade is designed to cut most common building materials, such as concrete paving slabs, house bricks and concrete blocks. To mark the launch, Jewson is offering between 17 October and 15 December a free gift with qualifying Atlas blade purchases.

Supermarket signs go Nationwide

Bradford-based signage manufacturer and installer, Butterfield Signs, is hiring equipment from Nationwide Access to install new illuminated signs at former Safeway supermarkets that are being re-branded after being acquired by Morrisons. Work is taking place at sites throughout the country in a rolling programme that will be completed by the end of the year.
“Time is the biggest factor,” states Kevin Killala, Co-Director of Butterfield. “Replacement of the main store signage has to be completed between Saturday night and Tuesday evening. Speed is of the essence”. The company has hired a Bronto Skylift access platform on extended hire from Nationwide. The truck-mounted machine can travel quickly from site to site and enables workers to reach up to 34m and out to 25m. “A lot of the signs are located above glass canopies or entrances. We need to reach safely above these with a platform that can hold two men, their tools and the signage itself.”

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