Brisbane road safety systems manufacturer Arrowes has developed an automated cone truck which places and retrieves road cones from highways, reducing costs and the dangers faced by employees manually laying cones in high speed traffic.
The Bendale company has completed and tested a prototype robotic truck (main picture, and below) and is in the production stage of its first commercial ACT model.
Arrowes executive director Ken Ea said the company emphasised research and development in its range of portable traffic signals, speed awareness signs, variable message sign boards, arrow boards and vehicle tracking systems.
Ea said: “The ACT is set to become the new norm for safe and efficient cone deployment and retrieval and is our most significant innovation to date.
“Our focus and DNA are centred on pioneering and investing in technologies that can improve safety for the roading community.
“We have relentlessly questioned and explored numerous concepts to create new solutions that deliver tangible results from day one.”
The new ACT has a capacity of 400 cones, with one operator utilising a touch screen and proprietary mechatronics to automatically close or open nine kilometres of highway without stopping.
Cones can be placed and retrieved from both sides of the vehicle while driving forwards or in reverse, and a kilometre of cones can be laid in only seven minutes.
Ea said the company was motivated by the risks associated with working in live traffic, including the tragic death in 2013 of traffic controller Suzanne Caudell on Queensland’s Bruce Highway – more than 750 people are injured at road works each year.
“We don’t believe that high risk should be acceptable in the road construction industry.”
Arrowes also has a philosophy of maximising the use of locally manufactured components, parts and supplies from its Queensland and Australian suppliers.
Ea said: “We support the local business community and ensure our close connections benefit our clients in terms of response times, quality and service.”
Subscribe to our free @AuManufacturing newsletter here.