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WELCOME TO FORKLIFTACTION.COM, MATERIALS HANDLING ONLINE.
This is issue #333 - 25 October 2007 of the weekly newsletter for industry professionals.
“North American market down for 2007”
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Forklifts face cold, harsh reality
When the layperson thinks of forklifts working in sub-zero temperatures like in a gigantic freezer, he or she thinks it must be icy cold. And the floor must be slippery and dangerous. This could be the case, but seldom is. Cold room floors are usually dry and ice is more likely to form on the forklift than on the floor. Read more
Konecranes’ China growth continues
Konecranes anticipates growth in China will overtake the group’s global sales growth for 2007 and the coming years.
The group made the comment in response to a Reuters news report this month.
Konecranes started producing empty container handlers and reach stackers in its fourth Chinese plant in April 2007, slightly later than initially planned (Forkliftaction.com News #283).
Konecranes president for north east Asia, Harry Ollila, tells Forkliftaction.com News the delay was not “dramatic” and was caused by prolonged heavy rainfall during foundation work for the Shanghai plant.
As the group will publish its third quarter result on 31 October, it has to be careful about making predictions on future issues that might impact on its share price, Ollila says.
Therefore, Ollila won’t comment on the new plant’s targeted production volume in its first year.
“Sales of forklifts have developed well in China and progress in this business segment is good,” Ollila explains, but adds that no decision has been made on a “phase two” expansion of the plant that was originally scheduled for 2008.
Konecranes’ sales in Asia account for 13% of group sales and China accounts for about one-third of that.
Ollila predicts the Chinese market for Konecranes’ products is expected to overtake the global market in the long term.
“The development of the crane market follows the development of industrial production. In China, the growth of industrial production recently has been around 15%, while the main European countries and North America have had single-digit growth.”
Chinese companies are included in the group’s radar for acquisition and joint-venture opportunities.
“We are continuously looking for opportunities to grow … China in this respect is no exception,” Ollila says.
The group used this year’s CeMAT Asia 2007 to showcase its products, including forklifts produced at the Lingang facility, near Shanghai.
AEM: North America down, elsewhere up
MILWAUKEE, WI, United States
The Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) forecasts the overall US and Canadian construction equipment manufacturing business to be flat through to the end of 2007, but a rebound is possible next year.
In its latest outlook survey, AEM predicts the overall construction equipment demand by end of 2007 will decline 1.9% in the US and remain flat in Canada at -0.1%. This contrasts strongly with worldwide business which is expected to grow 9.9%.
The market will pick up in 2008 by 2.8% in the US, 2.9% for Canada and 8% worldwide.
The survey asked respondents to rank the influence of several factors on future sales. The housing slump, general economy, interest rates and credit availability were key factors. Adequate transportation funding and rental company demand were also expected to have a major impact on business.
As construction machinery business is export-intensive, the strength of the US dollar against other currencies is also expected to affect business growth, according to the survey.
Machinery makers also expressed concern over commodity shortages and prices, including steel and energy.
AEM president Dennis Slater says the overall slowdown in 2007 follows “some very good years” for the industry.
“The residential housing slump in the US has sent ripples across the entire economy, not only the construction industry.
“However, growth in non-residential construction continues to offset losses in the housing market.”
Slater adds that the continued global demand for construction machinery is balancing the slow-down in domestic business.
“Economic signals are mixed, but there is guarded optimism that our economy will remain resilient and not descend into recession.”
Lifting equipment used in the construction sector includes rough-terrain and truck-mounted forklifts and telescopic handlers.
Watts acquisition enhances UK presence
LYDNEY, United Kingdom
Watts Tyres plc has acquired Mobile Industrial Tyres Ltd to boost its presence in the south east of England.
Essex-based Mobile Industrial Tyres will be integrated into Watts Industrial Tyre Services (WITS), Watts’ UK operations.
Mobile Industrial Tyres Ltd managing director Edward Woolley will be managing director of WITS. All 10 of Mobile’s employees will join WITS.
Watts Tyres plc chief executive Jean-Paul Windermann says Woolley has over 20 years’ industry experience covering the “supply/fit, wholesale and OEM markets” and will focus on further developing the UK service operation.
“This acquisition reinforces our position as a business that is focused on and dedicated to the materials handling industry,” he adds.
Windermann says the industry remains challenged by the rising prices of natural rubber, steel and carbon black.
“The downstream effects of 2006’s massive fluctuations in raw material costs are still evident across the industry and require careful management.”
WITS serves the UK materials handling industry – OEMs, forklift dealers and tyre dealers – through depots across the UK and a mobile fitting service. It has 100 employees and is headquartered in Gloucestershire.
Watts Tyres plc has operations in the UK, France, Germany, US and Mexico and a distribution network in 60 countries.
The acquisition value was not disclosed.
Forkliftaction.com Anounces November Special
After the success of our September special, we have decided to treat our advertisers again!
During the month November Forkliftaction.com will double up all advertisements in the Product Watch column.
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Oorja claims alcohol fuel cell is cost efficient
FREMONT, CA, United States
MHD Green Energy Solutions will be distributing Oorja Protonics’ “industry-first” alcohol-based fuel cell on-board charging system for materials handling equipment, OorjaPac, in North America.
Oorja CEO Sanjiv Malhotra says MHD will target large retailers, logistics service providers, food processors, heavy manufacturing and automotive industries.
“We chose to partner with MHD because of the company’s extensive experience in the materials handling equipment market and its commitment to green energy solutions.”
The OorjaPac is an on-board battery charger for industrial vehicles that uses alcohol-based fuel cell technology.
Malhotra says OorjaPac is more cost efficient than hydrogen-based fuel cell systems.
“Hydrogen systems require special fuelling equipment to handle pressurised hydrogen. These systems usually are in the range of USD1 million.
“Fuelling for alcohol-based fuel cells is safe and easy and utilises a simple tote dispensing system costing less than US10,000. It's as easy as refilling your windshield wiper fluid.”
He further boasts that OorjaPac extends battery life by 20% to 40% by improving the three factors that affect battery life – depth of discharge, heat and cycling.
The patent-protected OorjaPac can power Class 2-3 forklifts for two eight-hour shifts on five gallons of alcohol.
Malhotra will not disclose how much the company has invested in developing Oorja Pac, but says it has raised USD15.5 million in its last investment round.
MHD president Darrel Randall says the company is excited to partner with Oorja and that the relationship is a “true validation” of its commitment to providing environmentally friendly solutions.
Headquartered in Omaha, Nebraska, MHD Green Energy Solutions offers energy efficient solutions for the materials handling market.
Oorja Protonics, a fuel cell technology provider based in Fremont, California, is funded by venture capital companies Sequoia Capital and DAG Venture.
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Forklift used in biodiesel study
RIVERSIDE, CA, United States
A Hyster forklift was part of one of the largest biodiesel studies funded by the US Department of Defense (DoD).
The DoD’s Environmental Security Technology Certification program funded the project, which was a joint effort between the Naval Facilities Engineering Service Center, the University of California Riverside College of Engineering, the Center for Environmental Research and Technology, the US Army Aberdeen Test Center (ATC) and various military bases.
The goal of the study was to expand the database of emissions from military applications and provide a greater emphasis on emissions from biodiesel produced from vegetable oil sources (yellow grease).
The 10 vehicles and pieces of equipment tested included the Hyster forklift, two medium-duty trucks, two Humvees, a heavy-duty diesel truck, a bus, two stationary backup generators and an airport tow vehicle.
They were acquired from southern California military bases of the Aberdeen Proving Grounds in Aberdeen, Maryland.
The 2001 Hyster 65 forklift with a 2.6L Perkins engine was tested with an on-road, CARB-certified ultra-low sulphur diesel (ULSD) fuel and a soy-based biodiesel obtained from World Energy (B20-Soy fuel).
For the forklift, the test run simulated forklift usage including idling, hydraulic usage while idling, and driving with and without hydraulic usage over a 3.6 mile (5.8km) test run.
The ATC used EPA’s real-time on-road vehicle emissions reporter to record NOx, HC, CO, CO2 and other vehicle-operating parameters for the forklift.
A 20% increase in CO emissions was found for the B20-Soy fuel and the differences for total hydrocarbons and NOx were small and likely within experimental variability, the study found.
The study was published in the Atmospheric Environment journal in September.
Couple awarded USD3.2 million for forklift incident
KANSAS CITY, KS, United States
A US county jury awarded a couple over USD3.2 million after a three-day personal-injury trial involving a forklift incident.
According to the Daily Record, Joseph and Pamela Armato sued 1100 Services, a trade contractor, in May 2006 for the injuries Joseph suffered at its facility.
Court records showed a 1100 Services employee was using a forklift to move a large drum at the Kansas City facility when the drum fell from the forklift and hit the plaintiff.
Armato told the court he injured his neck, head, back and spine, resulting in partial paralysis.
Armato’s lawsuit claimed the forklift driver did not take adequate safety precautions in securing the drum and failed to keep a careful lookout.
He sought awards for past and future medical expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering. His wife sued for loss of companionship.
The jury awarded USD2.91 million to Joseph Armato and USD291,000 to his wife, reduced from USD3 million and USD300,000 respectively after jurors determined Armato was 3% at fault.
Japanese forklift arrives in museum
RIPLEY, United Kingdom
The National Forklift Heritage Centre has received a reach truck donation from Komatsu Utility Co Ltd (Japan).
Deputy general manager of Komatsu’s international division Kazuhiko Hirai handed the Komatsu FB10R-1 reach truck to museum owner James Brindley.
Hirai presented Brindley with a plaque to recognise his work in establishing the forklift museum.
Nissan finalises Atlet acquisition
Nissan Motor Co Ltd’s European subsidiary has completed its acquisition of Atlet AB after receiving European Commission approval.
Toshio Aoki, general manager of Nissan Motor’s industrial machinery division, has been named as Atlet’s new chairman of the board. Keiji Ikeda of Nissan Motor is Atlet’s new CEO. Ikeda will be based at Atlet’s headquarters in Mölnlycke, Sweden.
Nissan and Atlet combined will produce over 36,500 forklifts a year with an annual turnover of EUR858 million (USD1,221.5 million).
Raymond calculators prove savings
GREENE, NY, United States
Raymond Corp has introduced three online calculators at www.raymondcorp.com/solutions to prove how switching to Raymond products can cut operating costs.
The ACR Calculator estimates savings related to battery costs and changing times by switching from a DC-powered system to an AC-powered Raymond forklift.
The Reach Truck Performance Calculator counts the pallets moved per hour and cost per pallet moved to determine the productivity of Raymond reach trucks.
The Space Utilisation Guide shows how to “maximise the cube” by determining the number of extra pallets that can be stored by switching to narrow aisle and very narrow aisle forklifts.
Hour meter to track forklift
GREENVILLE, NC, United States
Hyster Company and On-Board Communications have introduced a remote hour meter reading device to track forklift run time, saving time and effort on maintenance and manual product checks.
The tool is housed in a 3 inch by 5 inch (7.6cm by 12.7 cm) box and links to a customisable digital paging network. The meter’s customisable network allows operators to choose a specific time for the device to submit forklift runtime data.
Users can log into the network and check the information from any computer at any time.
Doosan develops fuel cell
Doosan Heavy Industries & Construction is developing fuel cell for power generation.
The South Korean Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy selected Doosan as the main contractor for the USD55.6 million project to develop a 300kW-class power generation fuel cell.
Doosan is working with the Korean Institute of Science and Technology, the Korea Institute of Energy Research and Korea Midland Power on the project, believed to be the first of its kind in South Korea.
Movers & Shakers
GREENE, NY, United States
Raymond Corp has appointed Chuck Pascarelli as vice president of sales and marketing. Pascarelli has more than 20 years in sales and marketing, including the integration of distribution, sales, marketing, service, research and development. He was vice president of sales and marketing for pressroom products at Fuji Film Corp.
Konecranes group director for administration and business development, Arto Juosila, will leave his position to pursue personal interests. Juosila, who is also a group executive board member, has been with Konecranes for over 27 years. His responsibilities will be divided between existing executive board members in the interim.
Symbol of hate put on forklift
NEW YORK, NY, United States
A pair of hangman’s nooses was found dangling from a forklift in a Long Island public works garage last Wednesday.
Daily News reported police are investigating the incident as a possible hate crime.
The find is the latest in a spate of nooses that have appeared in the area in the past few weeks.
On October 11, a noose was discovered hanging from a streetlight in front of a post office near Ground Zero.
Nooses are a symbol of racist lynchings in America’s old South.
Outdoor forklifts for any rough terrain
DANDENONG, Victoria, Australia
Specialist in narrow aisle forklifts, Flexilift Australia of Dandenong, Victoria has recently become the exclusive supplier of a range of rough terrain forklifts, Sellick Equipment, manufactured in Canada.
The company is now seeking distributors nation-wide to stock the new range.
The rough terrain forklifts can be used in a variety of industries including lumbering and logging, sawmilling, building, pulp and paper, heavy construction, manufacturing, mining, agriculture and construction.
The ergonomically friendly S Series forklift, available in two- or four-wheel drive, and the TMF-55 three-wheeler are two of the models in the range on offer.
The Sellick design team say they engineered the S Series to maximise operator comfort and fork visibility, optimising productivity and safety.
The S Series forklift features the DieselMax EPA-compliant, low-emission, low-noise, four-cylinder diesel engine. All models are available with four-wheel drive.
All S Series forklifts are equipped with Sellick's high-visibility two-stage or three-stage mast assemblies. Sideshifting is standard and a wide range of carriages, forks and attachments are available.
The company offers a wide variety of hook, shaft, and rotating carriages, forks and attachments to customise the forklift for a particular application.
The Sellick TMF-55 features developments to ensure safety of operation, operator ergonomics and rugged construction. Reduced turn-around time maximises the complete delivery system - driver, truck and trailer. Since the TMF-55 can be easily loaded within one minute on the back of a truck or trailer, it saves valuable cargo space and eliminates towing or trailering.
The centre-mount operator station provides excellent ergonomics and easy access on and off from either side of the forklift and provides excellent 360° visibility for the operator. Sellick’s standard sideshifting mast is included. The mast provides outstanding visibility and the internal hydraulic supply eliminates high maintenance and costly hose reels.
The TMF-55 was designed to carry building materials and place them precisely where contractors need them. This lightweight and versatile forklift also enables sod growers, nurseries and landscape contractors to pick up and deliver in muddy, rough terrain conditions. The large 31x15.5-15 tyres provide excellent traction over rough terrain.
Builders positive about future
Building activity continues to improve and optimism about the future remains strong, despite the recent interest rate rise and pre-election uncertainty, according to the latest Master Builders Australia National Survey of Building and Construction.
The September quarter survey reinforces Master Builders Australia’s recent call for sound national economic policy to be front of mind for all political parties to assist in delivering the estimated $1.7 trillion of investment required to build Australia’s economic and social infrastructure over the next decade.
Master Builders Australia’s chief economist, Peter Jones, says the latest survey “reveals builders becoming more positive about the outlook for residential activity with conditions in the non-residential sector expected to remain strong”.
“Builders now expect residential activity to improve over the next six months, despite lingering concerns about housing affordability and other constraints on business activity.”
He adds, “Despite this positive sentiment, momentum gathering force in the residential sector would be set back if interest rates, currently on hold, were to move higher.”
“There is a critical need to boost supply, not hold it back, given that Australia is currently under-building by around 20% or 30,000 dwellings per annum.”
In other key findings of the September quarter survey:
• Builders’ own business activity rose again in the latest quarter.
• Builders expect business activity to improve further over the next six months.
• Business profits, already strong, are expected to improve further over the next six months.
• Builders have a healthy backlog of work on their books.
• The survey reports a positive outlook on the expected level of activity in the industry.
• Industrial relations as a constraint on activity stayed low in the quarter. Over two-thirds of builders now report industrial relations as a constraint to be either slight or non-existent.
• Pressures related to finding skilled labour appear to be building again, with acute skill shortages in some states and difficulties in attracting certain categories of labour.
• Builders expect interest rates to rise moderately over the next 12 months.
Used equipment in demand overseas: export while the dollar’s down.
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Due to strong performance by overseas economies, and a weak US dollar, we are seeing a huge increase in demand for used equipment from the USA.
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Let us put the tools in place to get you into the export market this week.
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Fun, food and forklifts on offer at Safety Show
SYDNEY, New South Wales, Australia
The 2007 Safety Show and Conference kicked off yesterday at Sydney Olympic Park, with an opening breakfast, one of several special events which will be held throughout the three-day event.
A highlight of the show, which runs until Friday, is tonight’s announcement of the winners of the Safe Work Awards which recognise innovation and excellence in workplace safety in organisations across New South Wales.
With more than 350 exhibitors, the show will feature major innovations in workplace safety solutions, including the latest in materials handling, working at heights, machine guarding and OHS training. More than 11,000 people are expected to attend.
Among the exhibitors is leading provider of global materials handling information, Forkliftaction.com. Situated at stand L58, the company urges visitors to drop in for a chance to win one of three remote-controlled forklifts! The team will be on hand to discuss industry news, demonstrate the Marketplace and Business Directory and assist with your marketing needs.
Email email@example.com or phone 07 3369 9090 to arrange a personal appointment.
Safe Work Australia Week
Workplace safety is improving, with Australia currently ranked in the top five countries for reducing work-related deaths. The country recorded a 36% decrease in compensated fatalities since 1996.
In New South Wales, workplace injury rates are at their lowest levels in 20 years and fatalities have dropped by 50% in this time.
However, a continuous focus on safety is required and workplaces are encouraged to organise activities as part of National Safe Work Australia Week. Held from 21 to 27 October, it aims to encourage all employers and workers across the country to focus on preventing workplace incidents and injuries.
“More than 650 businesses in New South Wales will be participating in Safety Work Australia Week by holding activities at their workplace,” says Workcover NSW chief executive officer Jon Blackwell.
“Incorporating safety into our everyday work practices and making it a daily consideration not only improves safety performance but has a significant effect on productivity,” he adds.
New from JLG
JLG Industries recently launched its new line of European-designed and -built telehandlers at the Bauma show in Europe. The new models will be available in Australia and New Zealand from early in 2008.
Mill start expected by Jan 08
Construction of the $1.7 billion pulp mill in northern Tasmania should begin early next year, says Gunns Ltd chief executive John Gay.
Former port head honoured
Ports of Auckland’s recently retired managing director, Geoff Vazey, has been honoured by the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) with an award recognising his outstanding contribution to the logistics/supply chain sector and the community.
Fifth strike this month for port workers
Workers at the Ports of Auckland went on strike on Monday for the fifth time this month. The three-hour strike was to mark Labour Day, and was part of an effort by workers to get a pay rise of just under 5%.
The port company is offering a 3.25% pay rise.
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4th Guangzhou International Brand Forklift & Accessories Exhibition China 2008
The 4th Guangzhou International Brand Forklift & Accessories Exhibition China 2008 is due to be held in the Liuhua Complex of Chinese Export Commodities Fair during March 13-15, 2008 .It will become an important platform for the enterprises of forklift & accessories to publicize the brands, process the effective transactions and open up the international markets.
Click here for the full text of this release, including pictures.
The Eagle-Multi 12Volt to 48Volt Multi-Volt Charger 220/240V AC…...from JAMCO
JAMCO announces the release of their Eagle-Multi Charger, a 12V to 48V multi-volt charger 220/240V Single Ph. which is fully automatic and fully digital. It automatically recognizes battery voltage, provides 50amp constant current and automatically adjusts to 50Hz/60Hz power cycle.
Click here for more information on this product, including pictures.
RAEDER-VOGEL: Special wheel materials for cold store and deep-freeze applications
Deep-freeze and temperature-controlled operations may require special wheel materials for safe and productive operation due to extreme temperatures and harsh conditions. With our broad range of high-quality wheel materials with different shore hardnesses, RAEDER-VOGEL can offer solutions for almost any application.
Click here for more information on this product, including pictures.
Equus Gauges from SMH
Equus gauges are now available from Systems Material Handling (SMH), Olathe, Kansas. Equus uses superior components in all of their gauges. Their mechanical gauges use solid brass bourdon tube meter movement and their electric gauges feature electric air core meter movement to ensure durability and accuracy. These high quality durable gages are made to last.
Click here for more information on this product, including pictures.
Nissan Forklift AC-Powered Platinum Pallet Trucks Feature Standard Components For Cold Storage Solutions
MARENGO, IL, United States
Nissan Forklift introduces its enhanced line of AC-powered Platinum Walkie/Rider Pallet Trucks – designed with standard components that can withstand harsh cold storage conditions.
Click here for more information on this product, including pictures.
Joseph Hrinik: Can you read legalese?
Waters, MI, United States
Joseph Hrinik lives in Michigan (USA) where he retired after 40 years of diversified occupational health and safety experience in both the private and public sectors. He is currently researching regional and national forklift safety legislation and forklift training programs.
Click here for the full Safety First feature, including pictures.
Jenny Zhang Zhen Mei, Hangcha Forklifts
She's growing China's biggest forklift brand - and doing so with a human touch.
Click here for the full Industry Profile feature, including pictures.
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