Located north-east of New Zealand, between French Polynesia and American Samoa, the Cook Islands comprise 15 major islands spread over 2.2 million square kilometres of ocean, divided into two island groups. Forty islets encircle a lagoon on the island of Manihiki, populated by 240 and renowned for its black pearls.
Moving goods between the islands often involves ships mooring offshore while barges are used to transfer consignments to the shore. Vehicular and pedestrian access is needed for efficient unloading of barges, which often occurs in remote areas with limited infrastructure.
When construction company, Landholdings Ltd, was assigned the task of building a new barge wharf on Manihiki which is 640 nautical miles from Rarotonga, a unique solution was needed to produce and deliver 1,000 cubic metres of concrete.
Landholding’s Bill Doherty said they needed a highly manoeuvrable, self-loading mixer that was capable of producing concrete to a tight specification using local screened aggregate sourced from beach areas in the vicinity of the construction site.
“Our search for the right equipment led us to the Fiori DB180 self-loading concrete mixer. The people from Semco in Australia who supplied the mixer thoroughly understood our needs, so we felt very confident in their ability to handle the job and proceeded with having the mixer shipped to us”, Bill said.
“We were not disappointed; the DB 180 mixer proved to be extremely productive, robust and saved a huge amount of time, with the only manual work involved being the addition of cement to the mix and pouring the concrete on-site.
“The mixer is ruggedly constructed and had no problem negotiating the rough and rocky terrain, performing with great efficiency and without any problems throughout the entire 450 hours of operation on this job. It will certainly be deployed for similar work elsewhere throughout the islands,” Bill added.
Graham Murphy of Semco said the Fiori DB 180 is a highly productive machine, and while compact, its agility and stability as a four-wheel-drive vehicle with an articulated chassis and differential swivelling axle has made it suited to large-scale works in some of the world’s most demanding environments.
“The Fiori DB 180 self-loading mixer enables independent production of top-quality concrete, delivered direct to any site, whether in an urban setting located in some remote or inaccessible area. Furthermore, it easy to use and is capable of producing over 60 cubic metres of concrete daily,” Graham said.