A new electric timber truck, believed to be the first of its kind in the UK, is now in operation in the Highlands as part of a forestry trial to help decarbonise the sector.
Scotlog Sales of Inverness has taken delivery of the new 44 tonne Volvo FM Electric, fitted with a specialist Metsatek timber body and Ecco bolsters, which will transport timber from the Port of Inverness to the West Fraser site at Dalcross.
Scottish Forestry is investing £452,000 in the three-year trial which involves Scotlog Sales, James Jones & Sons, the Volvo Group and Cleaner EV.
A second electric articulated truck has also been in operation in the south of Scotland with forestry business James Jones & Sons.
The participants will share their experiences of running the electric vehicles with others in the timber and rural haulage sectors.
In addition, Creel Maritime consultants will monitor the use of the trucks and arrange knowledge exchange opportunities.
Neil Stoddart, Director of Creel Maritime said, “In terms of road haulage, the timber industry is pretty advanced in looking for solutions to decarbonise.
“For example, we are reducing diesel lorry miles on many projects and opting for transport by sea.
“This is a very exciting project but there are big challenges in running HGV lorries on electric power, mainly on cost grounds and infrastructure.
“This three-year trial will look into all these aspects and I’m keen to share as much detail on this with the industry.
“So far both trucks are matching expectations both in terms of commercial performance and driver operation.”