North Wales FRS purchases mobile column lifts for fire appliance maintenance

Published:  09 November, 2016

North Wales Fire and Rescue Service has purchased two new Stertil Koni Earthlifts to assist with vehicle servicing and repair operations in its workshop.

The service has used the company’s mobile column vehicle lifts for a number of years and made the decision to purchase two of the new wireless Earthlifts to ensure maximum efficiency. Each one has 8,500kg-capacity wireless mobile columns, providing a combined lift capacity of more than 34 tonnes. All eight columns can be used together to double the overall lift capacity if required.

North Wales Fire and Rescue Service maintains a large transport fleet of 60 fire appliances, and incident command unit and 31 special vehicles such as all-terrain vehicles and foam carriers. The new Earthlifts can also be used off-site in the event of emergencies in the region such as flooding or power cuts.

A key feature of the new Earthlifts is the Active Energy Retrieval System. This was developed to further Stertil Koni’s aim of creating an environmentally friendly lift, and the system uses gravity and the load of the lifted vehicle to retrieve energy and then store it in the batteries of the lift’s wireless mobile columns. The energy generated by the raised vehicle is used as it comes back down, regaining the gravitational energy. This increases the number of lifting cycles by around 35%, compared to a fully-charged set of wireless mobiles with maximum load.

Other features of the new wireless Earthlift include quick installation – thanks to the lack of cables – variable raising and lowering speeds, accurate positioning, and use of biodegradable hydraulic oil. The lift also includes Stertil Koni’s Ebright smart control system. This has a full-colour touch screen control console, providing maximum visual information about every lifting operation, as well as critical information such as how many columns in the set are in use, the battery status of each column, and when the mechanical locks are engaged.

Dave Bond, head of fleet and engineering at North Wales Fire and Rescue Service, said: ‘When the time came to replace our existing Stertil Koni wireless mobile column lifts, we had no hesitation in specifying the two new Earthlifts. As expected, they are extremely easy to use, versatile and reliable. Also, the efficiency of the Active Energy Retrieval System provides real energy savings which deliver us a definite ‘thumbs up’ from our performance assessment colleagues.’

  • Operation Florian

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