Adelaide-based civil construction solutions specialist Gridlock Civil has built its business around the performance and reliability of its Komatsu equipment since being formed only three years ago.

28012011GridlockCivilBuildsBusinessAroundKomatsu-(1).jpgOwners Philip Warren and Peter McGlen have more than 40 years' civil construction experience between them, both with backgrounds as project supervisors/operators with leading contractors.

They saw a need within a niche market of providing high-quality specialist civil construction solutions to both the private and government sectors, and decided to establish Gridlock Civil.

Beginning in 2007 with just four employees plus Phil and Peter, Gridlock Civil purchased one PC35MR-2 excavator which became the foundation of a strong working relationship with Komatsu.

Today Gridlock Civil employs over 20 staff along with many other contractors.

With the growth of the company came the need for the procurement of plant that could perform,

as well as being reliable and robust enough to tackle Gridlock's ever growing scope of

works, said Phil.

"For Gridlock Civil there was only one choice and that was with Komatsu plant," he said.

"Shortly after we started, we decided to purchase an SK820 skidsteer, then a PC18MR-3, a PC35MR-3 which recently replaced our original PC35MR-2 and a PC78UU-6 excavator.

"Using our Komatsu equipment, we find we can achieve a greater quality of work, on time and within budget," said Phil.

Gridlock Civil recently completed a major project in Adelaide's Hindmarsh Square, and is currently in the middle of another major streetscaping project in Rundle Street.

Other customers include the Electricity Trust of South Australia (ETSA), various utilities, the SA Department for Transport, Energy and Infrastructure, as well as numerous local

government agencies.

"Our clients utilise Gridlock's services, based on our performance and reliability both of which could not be achieved without the help of our Komatsu equipment and our commitment to outstanding service," Phil said.

"When we started the company, we opted for Komatsu because of our previous experience working with the product, as well as the name and its reputation.

"We'd both been on a few Komatsu excavators over the years, and we thought we would give them a go. Since then, Komatsu's service and support has been very good; they have always been there to help us.

"We were very impressed with our first machine, the PC35MR-2," he said.

"It was very reliable, had plenty of power and grunt, as well as being very versatile for our needs a complete machine package.

It played a key role in Gridlock Civil's provision of a 24-hour emergency response team for ETSA and private industry in the event of major metropolitan power cables failing.

"That machine had to be on duty 24 hours a day, as we run a full-time night shift for emergency callout work. If an electrical cable goes down in the city, it needs to be fixed in a hurry, and we need to be there so we have to have reliable equipment.

"We just traded it in recently on our new PC35MR-3.

"Trading to the PC35MR-3 was an easy decision for us; we'd had such good life out of the PC35MR-2, which was doing very hard work.

"It had to rip through bitumen up to 150 mm deep, then through the 150 mm stone ballast that underlies a lot of Adelaide's streets before it could even start trenching. It was usually excavating to a minimum depth of 1.5 m."

Following the original PC35MR-2, Gridlock Civil's next machine was its PD78UU-6, which it bought because of the good run it was having with the first Komatsu.

"The best thing about this machine is its versatility," said Phil.

"It's able to work inside a car parking space on the side of the road, and with its knuckle-boom configuration is able to dig within the tracks.

"We bought our PC18 which includes a long-reach boom because the price was right, and it's an ideal size machine for working on footpaths," he said.

"Because it has retracting tracks, when we're doing street lighting works on a footpath, it allows us to dig, and still maintain pedestrian access.

"We use it to dig electrical sleeves or caissons, because you can no longer drill to install these services due to all the pre-existing services under the pavement.

"It's been a brilliant machine and is a very versatile little excavator. Again we are very pleased with its performance,"

"Our SK820 skid steer we use mainly as a pay loader in our yard, loading out sand and rubble and the like. It's excellent for this work, and has plenty of torque."

"Since we set up the business, we've been very pleased with the support we get from Komatsu," said Phil.

"Our local Komatsu rep Andrew Fowkes is always following us up, making sure everything is going right for us. We are really happy with the support we are getting from him and the company.

Phil said the company aimed to have a machine capable of carrying out every task required in the course of its business.

"We are now looking at going to the next step in our business, up to a 20-30 tonne machine in the near future. It is more than likely to be a Komatsu," he said.