Staff at the country’s leading manufacturer of gritters and snow ploughs are working around the clock making specialist vehicles to repair the near one million potholes blighting Britain’s roads.
In order to keep up with demand from councils and highways authorities for its ‘hotboxes’, Econ Engineering has added another production line at its North-Yorkshire manufacturing hub – creating nine new jobs in the process.
Whilst family-owned Econ Engineering is best-known for its bright yellow and orange gritters, it is also a key player in the production of highway maintenance vehicles used in patching and repairing crumbling road surfaces.
Using innovative technology, Econ’s single or twin chamber hotbox lorries and road patching trucks keep asphalt workable for longer, meaning road repair crews can fill more potholes without having to return to base because their material is no longer usable.
According to the potholes.co.uk website, potholes cost British motorists an estimated £2.8billion every year in repair bills.
Local authorities, it claims, currently pay out more than £30million every year in compensation to drivers whose vehicles have been damaged as a result of driving over a pothole.
Despite Chancellor Rishi Sunak promising in November 2019 to invest £1.6billion to fix potholes in Britain, the pressure group says road maintenance in England and Wales is underfunded by around 55 per cent, or £1billion every year!
Econ Engineering Operations Director Jonathan Lupton said: “There is a huge amount of pressure on councils to fix potholes, and our hotboxes are being snapped up by authorities and utility companies across the country as the best way of achieving this.
“In order to meet this demand, we have added another production line, taken on nine new staff members, and are working around the clock to satisfy the order book.
“Because of these measures we are now able to manufacture more than 100 hotboxes each year, an increase of 30 per cent from two years ago.
Mr Lupton added: “Our hotboxes and mobile road patching plant equipment are designed to keep the road maintenance teams working more effectively and efficiently. By keeping the asphalt at an ambient temperature means the repair is longer lasting.”