Trailer Magazine

Tarps with a difference

Tarps with a difference

With waste operators looking for an edge in efficiency, West-Trans has partnered with UK-based company, TransCover, to provide lighter-weight tarp system alternatives.

The waste and recycling sector is one of the fastest growing and most dynamic global sectors and those who work in the industry are essential to its development, according to an Inderscience comparative review* of the waste management industries in the UK and Queensland.

The waste industry in Australia is rife with cumbersome machinery such as hydraulic-actuated tarp systems for trailers, which prompts fleet managers to question how to improve transport task efficiency and performance. Waste fleet operators, in particular, are reviewing lightweight alternatives to cargo coverage in an attempt to boost productivity with modern equipment.

National equipment supplier and manufacturer, West-Trans Group, has long been manufacturing commercial transport equipment in the waste industry, and is now providing user-friendly tarp configurations around Australia through its partnership with UK-based company, TransCover.

“Since setting up the distribution arrangements with TransCover in the UK, sales of our lighter-weight tarping systems for the waste industry have exceeded our expectations,” says West-Trans General Manager, Les Carpenter.

“When we were in negotiations with TransCover, we indicated that we would be looking at around 50 systems per annum. Now, 12 months after introducing these tarps to the Australian market, we have imported and supplied in excess of 120 systems to a broad range of customers,” he says.

According to Les, the West-Trans HyCover weighs around 200kg, which is less than half the weight of a typical hydraulic setup, and is compatible with hooklifts and drawbar trailer equipment to cover open-top containers.

Les says that there are major advantages to implementing West-Trans tarping systems in commercial transport vehicles. “The absence of hydraulics in the HyCover system – aside from no hydraulic fluid leaks – means that the overall equipment structure can be much lighter when compared to hydraulic equivalents,” he explains.

“The operating principle of the West-Trans HyCover is quite simple. Using radio control, the tower extends vertically via pneumatic cylinders and the tarp extends and retracts using a heavy-duty electric motor, and there is also a fixed control station for ease of use.

“The commercial transport industry benefits from streamlined equipment, especially when it gives owner-drivers and fleets smarter ways to optimise performance through innovation.”

Due to the growing demand for the HyCover in Australia and overseas, West-Trans has since expanded its selection of tarping systems that are designed for specific applications, including the UnderCover system for hooklifts as well as a mini-HyCover for skip-loaders.
Meanwhile, the PullCover is a more compact, reportedly more economical system designed for smaller West-Trans skip-loaders. Les says operators do not need to climb on the truck body to operate the PullCover, making it a safer alternative.

“Given the rapid acceptance of the new tarping systems within Australia, West-Trans is now expanding its offering to include small spring-loaded tarp systems for the small OE tipping bodies fitted to the light truck segment, the manually operated DoubleCover for the large scrap trailers and the new fully automated STS system for grain trailers,” Les says.

Waste fleet operators look for efficient and reliable commercial transport equipment to remain competitive in a market that is steadily expanding, he adds.

West-Trans offers a point of difference that is influencing positive change in how manufacturers and end-users think about the future of tarping systems and how they can replace the need for bulky, hydraulically-operated systems.
“West-Trans will continue to focus on the supply of quality, innovative and cost-effective solutions to the road transport industry,” Les says.

*Determinants for the professionalisation of the waste management industry: a comparative review of the UK and Queensland, Australia.

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