UK’s first electric forklift trialled by HS2

In its bid to reduce its carbon footprint and support the country’s green economic recovery, HS2 is pioneering the UK’s first electric forklift on one of its major construction sites in London.

With zero pollution, the Eco Telehandler vehicle has been trialled on HS2’s site at West Ruislip by main works civils contractor Skanska Costain STRABAG Joint Venture. It’s estimated that over a week, it saved over 400 litres of fuel compared to a traditional combustion telehandler.

By cutting pollution from emissions completely, it creates greener construction sites, improving air quality for workers and the local community. It also represents a significant fuel, carbon and cost saving, with fewer refuelling vehicles resulting in a reduction of plant movement, an improvement in safety for everyone on site.

Manufactured by Faresin and supplied by plant hire company Flannery, the environmentally friendly electric drive unit provides the same performance as an equivalent conventional model but without the noise and emissions of a combustion engine. It delivers a range of further benefits including reduced charging times and notable savings in maintenance when compared to a combustion engine telehandler.

HS2’s Air Quality Lead Andrea Davidson said: “HS2 is leading the way with green technology in order to reduce our carbon footprint across the whole project, supporting the UK’s green economic recovery and making a major contribution to the country’s 2050 net zero carbon emissions target.

“Putting the environment at the heart of everything we do at HS2, the project is well placed to encourage innovations and set new standards in the industry to help improve air quality on construction sites. We’ve set ambitious targets for our supply chain to minimise whole life carbon emissions, and Flannery have gone above and beyond these, providing an industry-first in the materials handling equipment sector.”

Niall Hester, Operations Director at Flannery Plant Hire said: “HS2 have been hugely proactive in driving their green agenda and this is a great project to introduce this new machine. Working with SCS JV we identified the material handling requirements in this particular section as an ideal testing ground, and the site team provided good support for the process.

“Flannery Plant Hire are committed to protecting the environment from the effects of our daily activities. We are passionate about making sure we go as far as possible to protect the public, and beyond that enhance the environment. We’re extremely pleased with the outcome from the trial and are now talking to SCS JV about how we roll out more vehicles across other HS2 sites.”

James Richardson, Managing Director, Costain Skanska STRABAG Joint Venture commented: “Driving innovation that reduces emissions and noise and embracing new technology is at the heart of our Costain, Skanska and STRABAG Joint Venture work on HS2.

“We were pleased to be the first construction site in the UK to trial the Eco Telehandler with Flannery and will be looking at opportunities to bring them on site to reduce carbon and deliver the project more efficiently.”

Photo credit: HS2 Ltd