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Collins Earthworks takes UK’s first EC300E hybrid excavators

Digger Blogger | 08:00, Thu May 19 2022

Collins Earthworks has added a pair of Volvo EC300E hybrid excavators to its extensive fleet.

These are the first EC300E hybrid excavators in the UK and join other hybrid machines in the Collins yard. Collins already had the UK’s first Volvo EC750E and EC950E excavators and an L25 Electric wheeled loader.

Volvo hybrid machines harvest energy generated by the downward movement of the boom to achieve 17% greater fuel efficiency than conventional models.

To further reduce environmental impact, Collins is running the EC300E excavators – the first of their kind in the UK – on hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO).

“We want to be the company paving the way for other contractors towards carbon neutral construction,” says Collins site supervisor Nathan Warner.

Collins operates more than 1,000 items of plant and around 85% of this is Volvo. Its crawler and wheeled excavators, articulated haulers, and wheeled loaders are all Volvo.

Collins has put one of its hybrid EC300E machines to work in a team of 10 crawler excavators and 23 articulated haulers – with more to come – on the Segro Logistics Park Northampton Gateway project, being built by Winvic Construction next to junction 15 of the M1 (pictured below).

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Over three years, Collins will move 4,500,000 cubic metres of earth around the 480 acre site at a rate of 100,000 cubic metres per week in peak times to create plots for distribution buildings and a lorry park, a strategic rail freight interchange, acoustic bunds, and landscaped areas.  The project also involves widening the dual carriageway and the construction of a by-pass around the village of Roade to minimise traffic congestion, along with the planting of 60,000 trees.

“We have a lot of work to do, and everything has been precisely calculated at the tender stage, so productivity and fuel efficiency are crucial to us. Any small gains that we make cumulatively add up to a lot helping us to keep on schedule and within budget and to minimise our impact on local residents and the environment,” Nathan Warner explains.

In this repetitive dig and dump application, where excavators are operating 11 hours a day for five days a week, the EC300E offers a straightforward solution with a big payback.

“The fuel efficiency is amazing, and I can’t feel any difference compared to a traditional digger. It’s also really comfortable and easy to use and the controllability is fantastic. It’s great to be operating such a state-of-the-art machine,” says operator Jack Sewell.



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