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Custom Designed for Crew Safety in Urban Forests

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Many of our municipal customers come to us with very unique problems they need to solve with customized work truck packages that ensure their crews get their work done safely and capably the first time around. When the District of North Vancouver approached us to develop a custom chipper truck for their team of arborists in their Parks department last year, we collaborated with their fleet manager and end users to create the ultimate arborist command unit. “We designed this unit with crew safety firmly in mind,” said climber Nick Harris, half of the two-man crew that now tackles the district’s tree and overgrowth issues from their tailor-made mobile operations base. “We really thought about the many features and functions of this truck package during the design process, keeping safe operation top of mind through the entire process. We made some small improvements that can make a big difference on a daily basis, for example, ensuring the single door tailgate opens towards the curb instead of into potential traffic in the middle of the road.”

From bumper to bumper, this truck was designed to capably handle the unique environments and landscapes in the district. “North Vancouver is an exceptionally hilly and densely wooded region for the most part,” said Nick. “Having the dump body on the truck and keeping it to a 7’ long body allows us to maneuver the truck with the chipper trailer in tighter spaces like cul-de-sacs without a worry. The aluminum box is much lighter as well, which gives us a much better power-to-weight ratio when hauling a full load of mulch and the trailer as well.”

Some other key add-ons to this versatile truck package include vented side tool storage compartments with E track organizers, strategically placed tie-down points inside and out, front bush bar with winch, and a rear traffic director light bar for added visibility. “Even the extra exterior work lights enhance our crew’s safety when working after dark, which is typically when we’re responding to emergency calls,” explained Nick.

“Mike and the Work Truck West team made the design process really easy.” Nick added. “He was really receptive to our needs, had lots of good ideas to share, and was confident the package we developed together would work perfectly for our crews.” And the timing couldn’t have been better for this crew to get their new mobile command center into action. “We are really happy with the finished product. This truck makes us safer, faster, and more efficient all around. We definitely appreciated having it during the first snowfall this winter.”

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