Lehner Spreaders: "Probably the best machine investment we have made in the last 5 years"
Wayne Dawkins and Kevin Frenchum of New Forest District Council give their views on the Lehner Polaro 110 Spreaders they purchased, after two seasons of use.
Two winters ago, New Forest District Council invested in a Couple of Lehner Polaro 110 Salt Spreaders for the rear of their pickups. I visited Kevin Frenchum and Wayne Dawkins who carry out the gritting, to find out how they were getting on with them. They were only too pleased to share the success of the spreaders.
How did the Council do the gritting before purchasing the Polaro Spreaders?
New Forest District Council do the gritting for 54 carparks within the large district. Spread over 750km2, New forest is the largest of the 11 Hampshire local authority districts by area and also by size of population with carparks located in wards as far apart as Martin, Ringwood, Milford-on-Sea and Calshot. The Car Parks used to be gritted using pedestrian salt spreaders. Four teams (made of two people in each team) would take all day to grit the car parks, using approximately 40 - 45 bags of salt per day, which would be applied to the carpark entrances and the corners. The straights would usually be left, as these would cause less trouble for cars.
What benefits have been seen as a direct result of switching to Lehner Spreaders?
Since switching to the Polaro Tailgate Spreaders they have seen several benefits. It now only takes two operatives 3 hours to get around all 54 sites, and because of the more precise nature of the spreaders their salt consumption has dramatically reduced. Kevin stated that despite now gritting the the entire car park at each site (rather than just entrances and corners) they now only use 10 - 15 bags of salt per day. Wayne and Kevin are sure that the savings made by using the tailgate spreaders have paid for the machines in the first season of use. Wayne concluded that; in terms of value for money it is probably the best machinery investment we have made in the last 5 years.
Have users of the Car Parks benefit from the Spreaders too?
Because the pair can now get all the sites done in 3 hours, they are able to do the job before the carparks opening hours at 8am. Wayne commented that this has been great for the public perception of the council. He is often thanked by carpark users for the job he is doing. Finishing before the carparks open has also reduced insurance claims against the council, because everything is done before people start using the carparks.
What about the reliability of the spreaders?
New Forest District Council have suffered no mechanical or electrical issues with the machines at all over the two seasons. They have been extremely reliable spreaders, making them very inexpensive to run, despite very regular use. The pedestrian spreaders would only last a couple of seasons before needing fairly serious work done to them. The Lehner Spreaders are still going very strong after 2 seasons with only minimal maintenance.