Runtech North – a division of Runtech Ltd – is contracted to supply all plant and vehicles to the SSI UK iron and steel manufacturing facility in Redcar. It has purchased a JCB JS370 tracked excavator and 457 wheeled loading shovel to carry out dredging and materials handling duties at the site.

The brand new JS370 – complete with 23-metre long reach boom – is used to dredge the slurry ponds where waste iron from the manufacturing process is cooled. It works in tandem with the T4 Final JCB 457 wheeled loading shovel which loads the material into drying beds.

Runtech North’s Site Manager at Redcar, Mark Wood said: “Since the introduction of the two new JCB models, productivity has increased by an estimated 300% on how the dredging and materials handling process was previously handled.

“Both machines are performing absolutely brilliantly and the operators truly love them. The JS370 is easy to use, powerful and perfect for the job. The 457 is powerful, intuitive, extremely comfortable and does everything we have asked of it with ease.”

Supplied by dealer Holt JCB, the JS370 tracked excavator has been specified with a 23-metre long reach boom and dredging bucket. It is used to dredge iron ore powder – a waste bi-product of the steel making process – out of slurry ponds into which it is placed to cool. Once removed by the JS370 (which is also being used to widen these ponds) it is loaded directly into the 457 model which transports it to drying beds. Here the 457 WLS then turns the powder to speed up the drying process. In total the two machines will handle up to 40,000 tonnes (once dry) of this powder per year.

The SSI UK facility, built on a coastal site located in Redcar, imports raw materials via a deep-water berth and ore terminal. The fully-integrated facility carries out activity from raw material collection and coke making through to iron and steel making and power generation.

The JCB 457 WLS is the first machine to show off the completely new JCB CommandPlus cab structure, engine cover and rear counterweight design, all of which contribute to improved visibility, lower noise levels, increased internal space and an enhanced working environment for the operator.

In addition, the 457 is the first large JCB wheeled loader to meet Tier 4 Final emissions standards, with the adoption of a powerful MTU diesel engine that is perfectly matched to the machine’s operating duties. The engine contributes to a massive fuel saving of around 16% compared to the previous model. As with other JCB machines, the engine in the 457 meets Tier 4 Final without the need for a costly diesel particulate filter (DPF), relying on an efficient combustion process, with a selective catalytic reduction (SCR) system and an exhaust fluid additive to meet the regulations.

The 37-tonne JCB JS370 is JCB’s largest tracked excavator model engineered with exceptional strength, productivity, efficiency, comfort, safety and ease of maintenance.

Powered by a highly efficient, Tier 4i Isuzu 210 kW engine it delivers 25% more power than its predecessor and 27% more torque.

A massive 155kN bucket tearout makes the standard boom version of the JS370 model up to 12% more productive than the closest competitors. A 70/30 front screen split for a clear view of the front right track, plus a large laminated glass roof window ensures exceptional all-round visibility.