WITH THE RECENT PASSING OF THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT'S CARBON TAX LEGISLATION TECHNOLOGY SUCH AS KOMATSU'S HYBRID EXCAVATORS IS LIKELY TO BECOME MORE SOUGHT AFTER, ACCORDING TO DOUG BROOKS, OWNER OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA-BASED PLANT HIRE SPECIALIST BROOKS HIRE.
The company one of the largest Komatsu fleet owners in Australia with around 250 Komatsu units out of a total fleet size of 500 has recently taken delivery of four HB215LC-1 Hybrid excavators, part of what Brooks sees as "the way of the future".
Given WA's mining boom, there is no shortage of work for any of Brooks Hire's equipment, but he believes the Hybrids will be a good investment for the future.
"Right now, things are pretty busy, but when things back off again, they'll be good to have in our fleet giving us a bit of an edge on our competitors," Doug said.
"I think in time to come that they will be sought-after, especially as more contracts are drawn up with environmental issues in mind and the carbon tax is implemented.
"Now that the carbon tax legislation has been passed, as it filters down to the industry, I think there will be more and more organisations, especially government departments and bigger companies that want carbon tax credits and technology like the Hybrids has to tick the boxes for it," he said.
"It's definitely a step in the right direction."
One of Brooks Hire's Hybrids is on hire to a customer in the Pilbara region of WA, with another working for Alcoa to the south of Perth, and according to Brooks are delivering significant fuel savings to his clients.
"They are achieving about 9 litres an hour, as opposed to a conventional machine which is up to 14 litres an hour. As they pay for the fuel, that's saving them well over a drum a week, which they are pretty happy about," he said.
"But it's not just the cost per litre of the fuel. If you can save a tanker fuel run a week, that's another transport and delivery saving you are potentially making.
"Saving a drum of fuel a week, that's $500 at current prices by the time it's in the machine. Multiply that by 52 weeks a year, then the eight to nine years you have the machine for, and it's paid for itself.
"Those figures are very encouraging."
Based on his experiences, Doug is looking forward to seeing the Hybrid technology come to other types of earthmoving equipment.
"Komatsu needs a pat on the back for developing the Hybrid excavator technology, and I would like to see it implemented in trucks and other equipment," he said.
Above picture : Colin Brindle, WA Construction & Utility Sales Manager, Grant Menhennett, WA Business Development Manager Construction & Quarry, Doug Brooks, Proprietor Brooks Hire And Lenore Brooks, Business Graduate Brooks Hire And Also Doug's Daughter Received A Commemoration Plaque For Purchasing Two Komatsu