The truck is the first of two entering service with the company and are the company’s first-ever Volvo trucks. “Our work means we often need to access building sites and places with tight access, so we needed robust trucks that offered good ground clearance without compromising manoeuvrability,” says Managing Director Neal Waters. “Frankly, the Volvo FMX with steering tag-axle stood out and now we have the first one on the road I would say it does indeed give us the best of all worlds.”
The truck’s sleeper cab is equipped with a single bunk, although Neal says it is rare for drivers to spend nights away. “The driver is really impressed with the overall layout, loves the smoothness of the I-Shift automated transmission and says the torque from the 420hp 13-litre engine provides all the power he could wish for, even when fully laden,” he adds. “Furthermore, the all-round visibility is excellent and we really like the way the rear facing camera folds away, so it’s clean when needed – a master stroke from Volvo.”
Unusually, the FMX features a Sayers Road Tankers waste vacuum tank constructed from stainless steel and equipped with a Gardner Denver pump that runs off the truck’s PTO. “Sayers of Northallerton is generally associated with food grade tankers and semi-trailer vacuum tankers,” says Neal. “We approached them just over a year ago to construct a waste tanker for one of our other trucks and we were so pleased with the quality of the job and lead time that we opted to use them for the bodywork on both new Volvo FMXs.”
The tanks can carry up to 4,000 gallons (18,184 litres) of waste water as well as 400 gallons (1,818 litres) of fresh water. “The pump is remote-controlled from the rear of the tanker, so it is safe and easy for the truck to be single-manned,” says Neal.
Both new Volvo FMX trucks will operate from the company’s new HQ in Teesside. “Alongside our new HQ, we have depots in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, Doncaster and Milton Keynes,” says Neal. “These two trucks are the first we’ve bought since moving our HQ just before Christmas, so they are a bit special for us. They are also our first-ever Volvo trucks and I must say the support we’ve had from the Stockton-on-Tees depot of Volvo Truck and Bus Centre North & Scotland, has been extremely helpful. We were very specific with our requirements, but the dealer liaised closely with Sayers and we’re delighted with the result. We also have a 5-year Gold R&M contract with the dealership, which means we can concentrate on our business and let Volvo ensure the trucks are fit for that business.”