Herbert Zech, Senior Director of Zech Kies GmbH, has seen the benefits of Bridgestone tyres in operation for both the largest quarry in Vorarlberg and the largest quarry in all of Europe.
Dangerous Work Requiring Powerful Tyres
To contain the risk of further rock discharge at Nüziders, the site of Europe's quarry – the Schesa Murbruch, Zech Kies has been ensuring sand, gravel and concrete supplies within the Vorarlberg region since 1958. The materials transportation from the mining area in Bürsberg to the processing plant in Bürs is carried out underground with conveyor belts, which are over three kilometres long and above ground, using articulated Volvo dump trucks. With Bridgestone as a full-range supplier for construction machinery and truck tyres, Zech Kies relies on the Bridgestone VTS, VLT and VLTS models for around 77 per cent of OTR tyres in use, as well as for in the truck fleet.
Zech explains, “Here in Nüziders, traction, stability, durability and smoothness are crucial as fundamental tyre properties. Together, with a particularly high cut resistance and an optimal price-performance ratio, we particularly value the enhanced promise of quality that we experience from Bridgestone daily. The failure rate here is zero.”
The A30 and A40 Volvo machines with Bridgestone tyres cover around 1,800 operating hours per year, with regular journeys to and from the Schesa-Murbruch to the processing plant and the Tschalenga-Au quarry, so without the right tyres, the risk of downtime is high.
Why the VLTS Tyre Range Suit Zech Kies
Bridgestone's V-Steel Traction S (VLTS) tyres have been specifically designed and developed for articulated dump trucks that have to prove themselves on solid ground as well as in quarries or on large construction sites.
"The Bridgestone VLT and VLTS tyres are particularly suitable for earthy and muddy surfaces, maintaining traction with excellent handling and a high level of driving comfort," explains Christoph Frost, Director Commercial Products Bridgestone Europe.
"With the double identification E3 / L3 and E4 / L4 (with 150 per cent tread depth), they are suitable for wheel loaders and articulated dump trucks, which among other things enables better warehouse management."
Due to the mostly impassable terrain and the long journeys, the dump trucks and tyres are subjected to massive loads and have to withstand these tough operating conditions. At Zech Kies, there is another special feature to consider due to the underground transport measures. "The construction heights at the material collection stations are very low and require a lower construction height for the wheel loader to be able to pick up the material," explains Herbert Zech. "With the versions 650/65 R25 VTS and 750/65 R25 VLTS, we have exactly the super low-profile tyres available that we need at this point."
Bridgestone has worked hard to ensure generous coverage for drivers, with around 175 tyres in its catalogue. As well as the range, Zech Kies also appreciates the after-service from the manufacturer, explaining, “Our Bridgestone sales representatives regularly record work, in which they carry out the tread depth, the air pressure and a visual inspection of the tyres.”
Importantly, Zech Kies hasn’t discovered any quality defects, something crucial when dealing with unforgiving, rocky terrain.