Raising the safety bar with low-height Mercedes-Benz trucks

A London-based construction and engineering company placed safety at the top of its agenda when replacing its entire fleet. Kilnbridge opted for 22 trucks from across three Mercedes-Benz model lines.

Most are based on 18-tonne versions of the low-entry Econic, which has been awarded a five-star Direct Vision rating by Transport for London, thanks to its deep, panoramic windscreen, full-height glazed passenger door, and a seating position that allows drivers to make eye contact with cyclists and pedestrians at junctions and in traffic.

Kilnbridge works predominantly in London and the South-East. It is a CLOCS (Construction Logistics and Cyclist Safety) Champion, accredited to Gold standard by FORS (Fleet Operator Recognition Scheme), and an ardent supporter of both.

The skip-loaders and hook-loaders are now being used by its Waste Management division, which provides collection, recycling and ancillary services to commercial and industrial clients, particularly those involved in construction and demolition.

The tractor units and beavertail-bodied vehicles, meanwhile, are in operation with K-PLANT, Kilnbridge’s plant and equipment services business, which provides a comprehensive range of plant and equipment to support its ongoing construction and infrastructure projects.

K-PLANT Director Thomas Barrett explained: “Kilnbridge operates to the highest safety standards. We opted for the Mercedes-Benz Econic because it represents the benchmark in terms of ergonomics, and offers terrific visibility, with a generously sized windscreen and glazed folding door on the co-driver’s side.

“As well as ensuring that our drivers are at the same eye-level as pedestrians and cyclists, the low-floor cab with its wide-opening driver’s door scores very highly thanks to its outstanding ease of entry. This reduces the risk of drivers sustaining injuries, particularly by slipping while frequently getting in and out of the cab on construction sites.”