UK’s first Kobelco semi-automatic excavator has the X-Factor!

UK first, there are similar systems in development, however,I these systems have only managed to get the boom and bucket working or just the tilt rotator – not all three together.  So, a true revolution.

This machine will be heading off to work on HS2 in the not too distant future and as with the majority of the high profile infrastructure projects ‘safety is key’ and plant, people interface management is a crucial part of a safe site.

Plantforce Rentals have worked with Xwatch, who manufacture a range of safety solutions for plant, since the brand was established back in 2019 and has found the systems reliable, intuitive with an easy to use interface, and are compatible with telematics, GPS and proximity warning systems, such as SiteZone RFID and Blaxtair Camera.

Plantforce approached Xwatch to install its XW4 height and slew limiter to its already technologically advanced Kobelco SK10LC, to ensure the machine was fully compliant for major infrastructure projects.

Dan Leaney, Xwatch director of sales and operations said, “Xwatch units have already been fitted tested and approved to work on some of the largest infrastructure projects going on in the UK and many of the clients are now specifying Xwatch as their approved supplier of safety systems. The partnership with Plantforce and Xwatch is the perfect fit as ‘safety’ is our number one priority.”

The XW4 monitors a machine's height and slew movement and has been designed to accurately restrict movement using ‘feather touch’ proportional hydraulic control. An operator can manage the machine’s height and both left and right slew parameters which ensure the operator and machine safety also the environment around the machines. The Xwatch system can be retrofitted to any make or class of excavator. Xwatch is also the only solution with Network Rail Product Acceptance Approval.

Plantforce digital manager, Dale Hawkins said, “We are particularly proud that we were the first plant hire company in the UK to use the Leica fitted semi-automatic excavator.  At Plantforce we pride ourselves as being innovators in our field, providing the very latest machine technology to our customers, including tier one contractors on key infrastructure projects.

We have preferred partners who we choose to work with and Xwatch falls into this category – the synergy between our two organisations works very well. This combined with a reliable, easy-to-use system and an excellent after-sales service is why we have the confidence in Xwatch products to enhance our commitment to safety.”

Associated Businesses

  • Weston Super Mare, BS23 3YW