Case Studies

Nottinghamshire County Council

Nottinghamshire County Council are using two Multihogs for verge cutting across the county’s 4,500 km of roads. The first local authority in the UK to kit out its Multihogs with flail arm mowers, Nottinghamshire expects to make savings on traffic management costs of up to £1,000 a day. The side shifting front-mounted flail arm mower can be hydraulically positioned to work either side of the Multihog, offering major benefits when working on dual carriageways. Project Manager of Highways Services Mick Monaghan explains: “Due to the requirement to work in the same direction as the traffic, our old tractor-mounted system involved lane closures and rerouting, which obviously caused disruption as well as incurring considerable costs. Cutting either side of the Multihog whilst travelling with the traffic flow allows us to complete the work much more quickly and safely.”

Snow plough and gritter attachments will also allow the Multihogs to switch seamlessly from mowing to winter clearance duties for year round utilisation. Seasonal Works Manager Andy Oscroft highlighted this advantage: ‘Due to the unseasonably cold weather when the Multihogs were first delivered – we were gritting for 22 nights throughout March – we got to try out the Multihog’s winter capabilities first. Having heard testimony from other users I was confident that the machine would do all that it promised and this proved to be the case. The Multihogs are earmarked for service in routes where there are steep hills, narrow roads and estates where larger snow clearing equipment just won’t fit. The articulated design also makes them excellent for manoeuvring around parked cars for maximum possible clearance.’

Andy’s verdicts on the flail arm mower as well as the overall performance of the Multihog have also been fantastic. ‘The grass this summer has grown very quickly, so the Multihogs have been cutting 4ft high swathes of grass, mixed with scrub and coarse stems. Compared with our larger tractors with 110hp they have 20hp less output but you’d never know it – to be honest I’m amazed that the manufacturers have packed so much power into such a compact machine. Fuel consumption is excellent – when you are working long shifts in outlying areas you need to be confident that you have enough juice to get back to the depot, and the tank easily copes with the 10-hour daily operation that we typically need in the summer to cope with the workload.’

Seasonal Works Operative Mark Wardle spends so much time in his Multihog that he likens it to his ‘second home,’ and a very comfortable one at that. ‘Compared to the tractor-type vehicles with rear attachments the Multihog is very comfortable to operate as you have the attachment in front of you and are not constantly straining your neck to look over your shoulder,’ he says. ‘As you are seated away from the engine the working environment in the cab is very quiet and smooth. The low centre of gravity makes the machine very stable to operate even on steep gradients, and I have never felt any risk of getting stuck in even the muddiest conditions, as the 4-wheel drive has a real kick to it.’

Operatives such as Mark take pride in the quality of their work and he is impressed with features that enable more precise mowing. ‘The side-shift facility on the mower enables me to do a neater job as I can manoeuvre the flail head around obstacles such as benches, rubbish bins, etc, without leaving the cabin’ says Mark.  The 4m-reach of the arm can also mow very steep banks, so scaling them manually with strimmers is no longer necessary. Using a front-mounted attachment also means that grass is not flattened before it is mown, resulting in a better cut.

  • Nottinghamshire County Council
  • MH

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