Two Komatsu loaders a WA200PZ-6 and a WA100M-6 both fitted with Komatsu quick couplers are working in tandem for South Australia's North Adelaide Waste Management Authority (NAWMA) to improve and speed up its waste handling operations.
NAWMA, which is owned by three councils in the northern Adelaide metropolitan area Salisbury, Playford and Gawler provides waste management services to these three Councils, plus a further eight councils in the surrounding area.
At its Waste Processing Facility at Elizabeth West, NAWMA receives residential waste material, known as municipal solid waste (MSW), containing minimal recyclable material with residents placing recyclables in separate recycling and green organics bins. Commercial and Industrial (C&I) waste is also received and processed in the same plant.
It uses the WA200PZ-6, which is fi tted with a standard bucket, to push the loose MSW and C&I waste into a baling machine, where it is compacted and strapped with plastic strapping to hold the resulting bales together.
Then the WA100, fi tted with a bale-clamp, handles the MSW bales which weigh around 1.5 tonnes and measure 1200x1200x1200 mm stockpiles and loads the bales onto semi-trailers for transport to landfill, said David Diprose, Manager Operations at the facility.
"A key element of this operation for us is that the quick couplers have made the two machines essentially interchangeable, so if one goes down or is unavailable, we can use the attachments on the other machine," he said.
"That means we can manage both baled and unbaled material with the one machine if we have to, significantly removing the potential for down-time with the baling operation.
"We went for the two Komatsu machines due to the price and the options provided with them; even though we have two different-sized machines, compatibility between them both was important, so we can swap attachments as we need to," David said.
Attachments for the loaders include standard buckets and the grab, plus a rotary broom sweeper for the WA200, which is used for sweeping the large concrete hardstand and truck parking areas outside.
David said that since delivery, NAWMA "has had a few little teething problems, but really no dramas at all.
"We were also impressed with Komatsu's national training person, Aaron Marsh, who took our operators through the operation of both machines, and did a very good job," he said.
"The WA200PZ-6 compares very well with the previous loader unit we had, as it's around the same size and capacity, while the WA100M-6 is a massive improvement."
"Previously we had a forklift truck doing the bale handling, but the WA100 gives us much better visibility, so it's much safer around the work area, plus it's faster and more responsive," said David.
"As a result it's reduced loading times, because the operators have a far better view of where they are going and the semis themselves when loading the bales."