Why Road Sweepers Are Essential in the Construction Industry

Road sweepers are integral in keeping the roads around our towns and cities clean, and more so on the roads in and around construction and housing developments. There are many benefits of keeping these roads clean, and number 1 on the list must be health and safety.

Keeping the carriageways clear of debris and dirt build-up is a priority, as not only does it eliminate potential hazards, but it helps to keep the surface of the road from degrading more quickly. Regular road sweeping will also help prevent roadside drains and grates from becoming blocked, thus eliminating the risk of surface water build-up.

The longevity of road surfaces prevents the need for emergency repairs and aids road safety by maintaining the surface needed for vehicle tyre traction; the better the grip, the lower the accident risk.

Most construction sites have a regular flow of traffic in and out as well as the roads directly adjacent to them. By their very nature, construction sites produce dust, muck, and mess, all of which need to be managed. Large road sweepers scheduled regularly to patrol these areas can help stop the accumulation of much of the dirt before it has chance to build up to an unmanageable state. Developers have a duty to look after the environment after all.

Eynesbury Plant Hire services Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire and our company prides itself on offering rental services with superior customer care. All of our machinery and equipment is maintained to a high standard with full service history and annual safety-check documentation.

Our modern fleet of VT650 Lorry Mounted Road Sweepers provide consistently high pick up performance on duties including dirt pick up around site and cleaning access roads.

The sweepers have high capacity hoppers, water systems and fuel tanks and are designed to stay at work for longer and deliver superb coverage per hour.

Call our Cambridgeshire based team today on 01480 215555 for information and a quotation.

Tips for Safely Towing a Trailer

Road accidents can be bad enough, especially when they cause injury, but towing a trailer needs extra care and attention to ensure the safety of the driver as well as other road users. Here are our top tips for trailer safety on every journey.

Safety Checks

Make sure you do your trailer checks before you set off; ensure the lights work, check the brake lights and tyre pressures. Too much weight on the trailer can put extra stress on the tyres and cause blowout!

Don’t be fooled into thinking you’re invincible inside a 4×4. Do everything you can to stay safe, including remembering to fasten your seatbelt.

Check your weight

This doesn’t mean hopping on the scales either!  Make sure your trailer and haulage fall within the towing capacity of your vehicle. Double check that your trailer is hitched on properly before you set off on your journey.

Weight distribution

Make sure your load is distributed as evenly as possible on the trailer, but not too far back. If it is, there’s a good chance that the trailer will become unstable and ‘fishtail’ at a certain speed.

Vehicle handling

When towing a loaded trailer, your vehicle length can easily double, as can the weight. With a longer vehicle, you need to adjust your driving accordingly. Manoeuvres can be much harder work and may take a lot of practice before you get them right. You may need another person to guide you into reverse positions, particularly if you have blind spots and tight spaces to manoeuvre into.

Late braking and sudden turns are a no-no. Your stopping distance is greatly increased due to the extra size and weight, and you may think you have control over the vehicle, but the trailer may have other ideas!

Stay alert

When you first learn to drive, it’s drummed into you to use your mirrors. Often. They’re there for a reason, and more so when you’re towing a heavy load. Check them regularly to ensure your load stays where it should – on your trailer. If your load becomes unstable or unhitched, early detection will save time, hassle and even lives!

Improving The Aesthetics of your Property

Whilst the housing market is buoyant due to the stamp duty holiday, many people are opting to move house to take advantage of the extra benefit. Stamp duty, as we know, can add thousands to your house purchase price. On the flip side, with holidays over the last year cancelled, many people are happy to spend on home improvements instead. Whichever camp you fall into, we have some ideas about how to improve the ‘kerb appeal’ of your property, whether it’s to sell it, or just to make your neighbours envious!

Landscaping

Your garden is an extension of your house. In the warmer summer months, it’s always nice to spend time in the outdoors, either relaxing or playing. Barbecues are likely to be the way we socialise this year (if lockdown is ever lifted!) as it’s safer to mix outside rather than in.

A mature garden will undoubtedly add value to your property, but if you’re starting a landscaping project from scratch, then it’s a bigger task to get the larger more mature plants and shrubs in place without the help of some kind of mechanical machinery. You might have to clear lots of scrubland first and even digging large holes for new fence posts can be too big of a job to do by hand.  Your local Small plant hire company can supply the right kind of machine for the job.

Rendering

This too can be a big budget project, but if the brickwork of your house is ugly, then cover it up! It will add a layer of protection from the elements, and the beauty of it is, if you get bored with the colour, paint it again! Render can give your home a more sleek and contemporary appearance, but you need to be sympathetic to the style of your house before you embark on any drastic change.

Maintenance

Check for maintenance jobs that need doing. A missing tile from your roof could be a red flag to any potential buyer, as well as causing all kinds of trouble in your roof space.  Look for cracks in your paths and driveway and fill accordingly, give your front door a lick of paint and place some brightly coloured flowers in pots at the side of it.

Windows

If you can’t afford to have all of your windows replaced, consider investing in just the front of your house first. You only get one chance to make a good first impression! If replacing even half your home’s windows is outside of your budget, make sure that your existing ones and their frames are clean.

Sustainable Change at Eynesbury Plant Hire

In September, the UN vowed to clamp down on pollution and embrace sustainable change, eliminating plastic waste in oceans and clamping down on CO2 emissions. Reports from the UN found that global pollution across the earth was significantly impacting the lives of mammals, birds, fish, amphibians and reptiles, therefore a drastic change in our activities is required to prevent a potential sixth mass extinction event.

Recently the government announced that the phasing out of diesel and petrol cars will be accelerated by some ten years in a response to the EU and global efforts to combat climate change. Our destruction across the planet is accelerating faster than ever before and unless we all take immediate action the consequences will be severe and likely irreversible.

Plant machinery hire is a serious contributor to greenhouse gas emissions and change in this industry is paramount. Electrical engines for smaller categories are starting to become available but in the large categories, they continue to be underpowered and incredibly expensive. Our view is that this technology is not going to evolve quickly and its implementation will take years. However, there is a lot that we can still do to make a difference and reduce our CO2 footprint.

Simply waiting for the technology to catch up is not an option when the environment is in a state of crises. At Eynesbury Plant Hire we are looking to address this by looking at our practices and improving them. Currently, we are encouraging all of our staff and equipment users to minimise the amount of time they are operating the engines so we can reduce carbon emissions.

As we move further into the year Eynesbury Plant Hire will be looking to set targets and reduce our CO2 footprint further, aiming to make a positive change for future generations. If you want to hear more about our plan to make our company more sustainable, please get in touch with us today!

Hiring Plant Machinery and What to Expect

Purchasing plant machinery can be astronomically expensive.  That’s why we’re here! Hiring machinery makes your building project far more cost effective, or if you’re a builder, your bank balance healthier!

Confidence in your supplier is essential and peace of mind that all equipment has been well maintained is a must in order to run your project effectively and safely.

If you want to make an informed decision about plant equipment hire then take a look at our top tips.

  1. Availability and Delivery

Have you contacted your supplier to see if the equipment you need is available on the dates that you need it?  Certain machines may be in high demand so make sure that you check their availability well in advance.  Can you afford to delay your building project? Avoid costly penalties by ensuring you have your machinery booked!

Logistics and delivery times need to be considered within your rental plans.  Determine when the equipment should be delivered to your site, particularly if it is during a busy time of year.  How is your access?  Will the delivery vehicle be able to gain entry to your site easily, or will you need to issue special instructions?  Will the equipment be delivered in one piece or in sections? These questions are another reason why you need to book your machinery hire in plenty of time.

  • Safety First

Before you hire any kind of machinery, you will first need to address the safety issues associated with it.  Serious injuries happen every day on building sites, and some of these are caused because machinery is faulty or misused.  You should always choose a reputable hire company that regularly inspects its machinery and equipment, dealing with any issues immediately.  Here at Eynesbury Plant Hire, health and safety is paramount, and we offer both operated and self-drive service.

  • Is your equipment reliable?

Your equipment will obviously have been previously used, so take into consideration its age and condition. Although plant hire machinery is well maintained (as long as you use a reputable company) there can be instances where breakdown occurs.  The older the equipment, the more prone to breakdown.  Firms like ours continually invest in the services offered to our customers to ensure machinery is up to date, maintained and reliable.

  • Fit for purpose?

Each building project is different, and so your hire plant needs will differ, depending on the job.  Hiring the wrong type of machinery can be costly, both in terms of finances and delays.  Your hire company will advise you and answer any queries you have to make sure you get the correct piece of equipment for the job in hand.

For more information about our Plant Hire services get in touch with us!

How will the recession affect the construction industry?

We are now living in a world where the word ‘unprecedented’ is used on a daily basis.  It is commonplace in conversations describing the state of the country, the pandemic, and the economy.  The uncertainty that almost every sector of business has felt since the early part of the year is itself unprecedented, as the pandemic has gripped every corner of the earth.

As lockdown slowed the economy almost to a standstill, we now find ourselves in the midst of a recession. This spells bad news for our construction industry, which was starting to pick up slightly as builders returned to work after they were forced to stay at home for many weeks in the first half of the year.

As the furlough scheme enters its last couple of months, unemployment is set to rise in the aftermath as companies struggle to get back on their feet.  For the construction industry, private housing is set to be the hardest hit, with a 42% contraction in production.  Falling incomes will see consumers unwilling to commit to large purchases, or loan repayments to finance them.  This in turn will slow the demand for house purchasing and large scale home improvements and will prevent them from bouncing back as quickly as other consumer spending areas.

Much of the activity we see now on building sites is largely focussed on building that is already reserved or near to completion.

In the commercial sector, retail is already on its knees. High street and town centre redevelopment are slowing as footfall diminished over lockdown. Although the hospitality sector is striving to get back to normal, online spending has meant the need for high street shopping has decreased.  Office space is no longer the sought after commodity that it once was as British work forces are taking a more flexible approach to home working.

One thing is sure; if the government wants to achieve its target of building 300,000 new homes per year, changes (and a large boost) will be needed.  New campaign group, Housing Diversification, would like to see the Help to Buy scheme extended to include custom and self-build homes, plus investment in more small site work, using smaller building firms where local authorities engage with developers.  This would enable development to grow at a sustainable level as small to medium sized housebuilders tend to build on smaller sites in existing communities.

You can find information on all of our plant hire equipment and machinery here.

City People Want to Escape to the Country Just as Construction Sector Slashes More Jobs

City living has definitely lost its appeal to many living in the capital and other major cities around the UK.  Lockdown has thrown up its own set of problems, and at its peak the Coronavirus left many families unable to get any access to the outdoors, apart from their 1 hour of exercise per day.  With 21% of Londoners having no garden, and rental prices at a premium, it’s no wonder that more urban locations and country living are on the radar of city dwellers.

The trend in relocating is nothing new; the 1665 Great Plague saw those that could afford to, flee London, and even parliament moved to Oxford at the time. And in more recent times, the London bombings in 2005 saw a spike in interest in rural locations. Although these moves have been largely temporary, the post COVID world may be a different place altogether.

Lockdown has proven for many employers that workforces can be just as effective working from home.  Technology has offered tools that have never been available before.  Employers and employees alike have gotten into a rhythm whereby they can attend meetings virtually and produce work from home, rendering the need for office space (and the pricey overhead that goes with it) effectively redundant.

With families having reassessed their wants and needs during lockdown, city living no longer appeals to many of them.  So what will this mean for the housing market in more rural areas?

With a sharp boom in activity within the construction industry as lockdown eased a few weeks ago, housebuilders and developers should be busier than ever.  Sadly, the rate of construction job cuts increased during July despite the industry’s rise in output.

House building was the main growth driver in July, which also saw a sharp rise in construction orders.  But where confidence in the economy has taken a nosedive, clients are declining to commit to new projects.  Construction firms have battled to catch up with pre-Coronavirus projects, but the competition for the purchase of raw materials has resulted in higher costs, the knock on effect being redundancies.

The escape to the country may just be a pipe dream for some, as housing developments could take longer to recover than anticipated.

The true strength of the economy isn’t likely to be known until the end of the furlough scheme in the Autumn.  This may put a different light on the subject for those would-be relocators!

If you would like to get further information on our plant hire services, you can access it here.

Plant Hire Equipment for Domestic and Professional Construction Work in Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire

We all need tools of some kind or another at some time or another!  There may be a construction job at home or in the garden, or you may be a builder needing to hire equipment for a large site job.  If handled correctly, there are few health and safety mishaps involving plant hire equipment, but this is largely due to the maintenance and upkeep of stock held at our premises.

Hospital A&E departments are regularly treating people with injuries sustained at work through the use of power tools, and trips and falls, and a large percentage could be avoided if more care were taken.  Almost half of accidents involving power tools arise from operator misuse.  Therefore, The Health & Safety Executive prioritise the importance of following an appropriate Health & Safety Policy.

As a plant hire company, we ensure that all our plant machinery and equipment is regularly inspected and maintained. Making sure you hire the right machine for your job is paramount; this will make sure your job comes in on time with minimal risk to your safety as well as your budget. We will advise you of the correct machine for use when you enquire. 

We know that plant machinery is very expensive; that is why so many building contractors choose to hire instead of purchasing.  The machinery you use could affect the reputation of your company. That is why our stringent checks of every piece of machinery is so important; our business thrives on repeat custom, and as the saying goes ‘you’re only as good as your last job’.  We want every job to have the desired outcome!

You can find information on all of our Plant Hire services here.

Does The Back To Work Order Create Difficulty For Construction Workers?

As the country now enters its ninth week of lockdown amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, the Prime Minister addressed the nation last week, telling us that ‘anyone who can’t work from home, for instance those in construction or manufacturing, should be actively encouraged to go to work.’  Guidance has been published for employers on how they can encourage staff back to work in a safe manner.  One particular document is specifically for ‘Construction and other outdoor work’ which sets out the safe working measures when returning to work on site.

Many sites across the country are reviewing their procedures to stay in line with the safe working rules, but many of their workers are worried as they rely on public transport to travel to work, and government guidelines warn against using public transport where possible.

This is all likely to cause conflict, as aside from public transport issues, social distancing of 2 metres can be difficult to maintain on a building site, particularly where certain jobs require more than 1 person.  With PPE being in such short supply, this too is likely to be a bone of contention between employers and employees.

Employees have a legal right to raise concerns about their health and safety and can refuse to work if they feel that they are at imminent risk of harm, without fear of disciplinary action.  This could, of course, present site managers with a huge challenge; the health and safety of the whole workforce has to be paramount. Those not prepared to take the risk of going back to work, and those who are not adhering to the social distancing rules whilst at work will surely be causing their employers more stress.

One thing is true though; in order for the economy to even begin to recover, all sectors of industry need to be working, whether it be in construction or manufacturing. And whether the current conditions employees are forced to work under will be the ‘new normal’ remains to be seen.

More information about Eynesbury Plant Hire’s services can be found here.

What Coronavirus means for the Construction and Trades Industries

New measures came into force on 23rd March stating that you should only leave home for one of four reasons; shopping for basic essentials and medicine, one form of exercise a day, medical needs or caring for the vulnerable, and travelling to and from work but only where this cannot be done from home.

There are many industries where it is impossible to work from home, and one of these is construction.  In order for our economy to stay buoyant, industry and manufacturing must keep up production, as so many other sectors are closing down for the foreseeable future.

A growing number of construction companies have downed tools in a bit to help stop the spread of the coronavirus, but there still seems to be some confusion about the government’s advice about social distancing, and whether all construction is deemed as essential.

The government has said that work can continue so long as social distancing rules are adhered to. Some argue that a 2 meter distance between people on construction sites is not only difficult to police, but also to maintain.  In the light of this, many house builders have closed their sites amid fears that spreading the virus was a very real danger.

Shortly after lockdown rules had been announced, the Communities and Housing Secretary, Robert Jenrick stated: ”It’s important that we make sure that construction and manufacturing can continue and that seems to me to be the safest way of ensuring that we can maintain appropriate social distancing rules in a way which ensures that people who cannot work from home continue to do so.”

However, not all construction is carried out on large sites.  Many builders have to enter people’s homes in order to carry out their work.  Work on home extensions which involves close contact with the homeowner has been deemed ‘inappropriate’ but reconstructing or building a home where there is no one present is appropriate and can continue.

Government rules also state that ‘No work should be carried out in any household which is isolating or where an individual is being shielded, unless it is to remedy a direct risk to the safety of the household, such as emergency plumbing or repairs, and where the tradesperson is willing to do so. In such cases, Public Health England can provide advice to tradespeople and households.’

In such unprecedented times, it’s impossible to gauge when life might begin to return to normal, but for those whose livelihoods depend on them returning to work it can’t come soon enough. 

For our Plant Hire services page click here.