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Video | Balfour Beatty rolls out automated cone laying machines

Balfour Beatty is rolling out automatic cone laying machines (ACLM) for its highways operations.

Cone laying remains essential to delineate traffic during maintenance works. But it is also one of the biggest risks facing roadworkers.

The new Falcon ACLM automated cone laying machines, built on Scania’s low entry L-series chassis, can deploy or collect a cone in under 10 seconds. That removes the need for operatives to manually lift up to five tonnes of equipment per shift.

The machine has received regulatory acceptance and will operate across Balfour Beatty’s Connect Plus Services consortium. Connect Plus Services operates and manages the M25 and its key arterial routes on behalf of National Highways.

The project received funding from National Highways’ Designated Funds for innovation programme. Highway Care and Switzerland-based technology partner SENN Engineering developed and supplied the machine.

Phil Clifton, Balfour Beatty managing director, highways, said: “We hope the machines will radically improve the lives of highways workers by reducing their direct exposure to a live road environment – demonstrating our commitment to achieving Zero Harm and to sending our people home safe and well every day.”

Martin Bolt, National Highways head of lean and continuous improvement, added: “The ACLM takes out the human element in the laborious task of putting out cones as well as eliminating an element of potential risk. It also frees up workers who can be redeployed to other traffic management duties.”

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