Transfield - New Zealand
Transfield wins with the Walk 'n' Roll
By Ann Pistacchi
Paul Newbound, Franklin Branch Manager for Transfield Services, says there are two key components to any road maintenance contract. "First, you have to make sure you are meeting all of the contract demands, and that you fulfill these demands by delivering quality work. Second, you need to be realistic about your costs. You can't continue to deliver on a contract if the services you provide are costing more than you are getting paid. It is a simple equation.
A year ago, Newbound and his team were struggling with this equation. As the road maintenance contractors for Franklin District Council, they found themselves in a situation in which delivery of contract demands was costing them more than they were bringing in. "this job started AS A huge blow-out, "Newbound said. "To meet contract demands we had to use a grader and then follow it with a 7-ton roller that had it's own driver." This operation meant more machinery and more man -hours than Transfield had originally budgeted for, resulting in tens of thousands of lost dollars each month.
"Clearly," Newbound says, "we need and innovative solution to this problem, and we needed one quickly."
The answer to the problem came in the form of the Walk 'n' Roll packer/roller, an American made packer/roller that allows one man to do the work of two by making the blading and compacting of a road one operation. After seeing a Walk 'n' Roll in action at a site in Northland, Transfield hired a unit for a trial run.
"Within the first six weeks it was obvious that the Walk 'n' Roll was saving us huge amounts of money," says Newbound." After a four month trial we purchased it outright, and over the term of the contract it has already paid for itself."
The Walk 'n' Roll was first suggested to Newbound by OPUS Network Maintenance Manager Nicky Smith who was impressed by the product's output, and by the fact that using the Walk 'n' Roll "was an environmentally friendly option."
Because the use of the Walk 'n' Roll meant one less machine and no transporter truck, the carbon footprint of Transfield's operations could be cut almost immediately by up to 50%. Over time, the Walk 'n' Roll also offered the opportunity to bring the carbon footprint of the operation back to close to carbon neutral because using a roller reduces the amount of aggregate required by 10% to 30% - and the number of gradings per year by a similar amount.
This is one of the many reasons Newbound says the Walk 'n' Roll has been WORTH ITS WEIGHT IN GOLD.It is easy to maintain, easy to maneuver, and compacts almost as well as a standard 7 ton roller. Since we starting using the Walk 'n' Roll we've had almost no complaints about potholes or other surfacing problems. That means this equipment has been the right thing for us - and it is saving the ratepayers huge amounts of money."
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