DAF in 'pole' position for BT Fleet
BT Fleet, the award winning fleet management and vehicle maintenance subsidiary of BT, has taken delivery of 22 new Euro-6 DAF LF 150 FA 7.5 tonners as lightweight Pole Erection Units (PEUs) – designed in conjunction with SB Components specifically for nationwide installation of communications poles on behalf of Openreach.
The short-wheel-base trucks are a bespoke solution for BT Fleet and increase the group’s capacity so support the growing customer base in the UK. Equipment includes auger, crane, road-guarding kit and storage –it is the first time in over 10 years that BT Fleet has procured a poling solution ‘from the ground up’ and a design which is already significantly boosting productivity.
Although BT Fleet has a long history of operating DAF products, the chassis procurement procedure invited other manufacturers to find a solution to BT Fleet’s requirements.
“Openreach has 3.5 million poles across the UK, and fleet utilisation is critical to providing an effective service,” saidBT Fleet’s Commercial Director, Duncan Webb. “These latest DAF 7.5 tonners are already delivering significant operational advantages beyond our previous vehicles.With everything ‘on-board’, our trucks can now maximise their time in operation.”
“DAF’s willingness to find a solution really impressed.DAF were very responsive and, along with SB Components, we designed a new vehicle from the ground up.The result is a vehicle that ideally suits the end-user’s needs. In fact,” he added, “the finished vehicle is an improvement over our initial concept. We now have 22 DAF LFs in service with another 15 on order.”
BT Fleet has used DAF products almost exclusively for polling applications since the early 1990s and, more latterly, DAF LF55 chassis at 12 tonnes GVW. The Euro-6 LF 7.5 tonner provides BT Fleet with a new lightweight PEU vehicle while larger DAF PEUs are used for multiple polling operations.