The Duggan Steel Group, incorporating Duggan Steel (Irl) Ltd and Duggan Profiles & Steel Service Centre Ltd, operates from three factories in Kilkenny and a depot in Co. Cork. The company supplies steel construction components to the agricultural and industrial sectors and handles well in excess of 50,000 tonnes of various steel products every year.
At the steel stockholding site in Kilkenny, long products, plate, hollow sections and merchant bar are stored in the 70,000 ft² warehouse and also outside. Managing the safe and efficient movement of these hefty loads around the premises is a challenging task, and one that is now in the hands – or the forks, to be more accurate – of five Combilift 4-wheel sideloaders.
Duggan Steel’s first Combilift was acquired in 2004 and a mix of models has followed since then which are used at its various sites, including a multidirectional C4000 and a 5 tonne capacity Combi-SL. The new 4WSL diesel-powered models were brought in to replace other brands that had previously been used.
It’s a tough life for the trucks in Kilkenny, where there is pressure to “get a lot done” according to Group Procurement Manager Pat Rafter Pat. Working a 9 and half hour shift daily, they offload incoming deliveries of products which can be as long as 18.5m and weigh up to 5t and put them into specific storage areas. As soon as they have finished dealing with incoming stock they start moving outgoing loads for next day despatch.
Combilift’s 4WSL range, with 5t or 6t capacities, was developed for operations that require reliable, robust and fast speeds across extensive sites without any risk of overheating which is a major drawback of other sideloader brands. This makes them ideal for this application as each truck covers at least 20 miles a day across the 16 acre site and clocks up over 2,000 hours a year. “It’s the best model for the weights we lift, the surfaces in the yard and the harsh environment and has proved very reliable,” says Pat.