Held in conjunction with the Brisbane Truck Show in May was the Heavy Equipment and Machinery Show (HEMS), located at the ‘Ekka’ just outside the Brisbane CBD.
Given the working relationship that exists between the earthmoving and construction sectors and road transport there was also a trucking element as part of HEMS. Included in the list of exhibitors was Jason Skennar of Big Chief Hire, who had on display two of the Isuzu tipper trucks that he oversees as part of a large hire fleet based out of Ormeau.
Established in South Australia, the Big Chief Hire operation has expanded firstly to Melbourne, with the Queensland depot established around 18 months ago. With a full complement of earthmoving gear across a variety of excavators, graders and rollers for hire, the truck fleet, which numbers around 20 units, comprises rigid tippers and water tankers, with Isuzu the preferred brand across the truck fleet.
“We run both single and tandem axle tippers, the smaller trucks manage the little jobs, and we also have a twin steer/tandem axle unit as they handle a bit more payload and allow for more value per load. The water trucks are currently a hot-ticket item, and they range from 5000 through to 13,000 litres. The bigger water trucks are great for the civil applications, with all the construction going on in south-east Queensland currently dust suppression is a big thing,” explained Skennar.
Given the nature of the hire business where a number of different operators could be operating the trucks, the company has settled on a standardised spec across the fleet including automated transmission.
With some trucks out on long term hire contracts for up to two years, reliability of is also a key factor, which Skennar thinks the Isuzu’s have well covered.
“The reliability of the Isuzu’s is a big thing – and they are efficient on fuel and the drivelines are great, with the auto making the fleet more accessible for drivers. We spec our trucks are to the industry requirements, and we are happy with how they are set up – they haven’t let us down to this stage.”
With building and civil construction still booming, and Brisbane hosting the Olympic Games in 2032, there will be an increasing role for trucks to play their role it would seem the Isuzu’s will play their part in the Big Chief fleet for a number of years.
“Trucks are a really good compliment, they are a primary part of our business…we need trucks working and we need the quality and reliability, and we are happy with the product we have from Isuzu.”