High Flyers

Rapid Access successfully coping with the surge in the powered access market.

Visitors to November’s Big 5 exhibition will recall being greeted by a hefty display of aerial work platforms (AWPs) in the forecourt of the Dubai World Trade Centre.

An extensive fleet of towering scissor lifts, articulating boom lifts, telescopic boom lifts and telehandlers, amongst others, filled the concourse, and positive feedback from companies which showcased their products at the four-day exhibition confirmed demand is increasing.

The surge in the number of GCC construction projects launched or re-started over the past year naturally brings with it the requirement for the equipment to complete the work, but is there something else also driving the AWP market?

Time is of the essence now more than ever; Dubai Expo 2020 is just five years away and multiple major civil construction projects are in the pipeline across the region, and contractors need the best-suited equipment if they are to complete their projects on schedule.

But speed must not compromise safety. “Too often, we see the wrong equipment being used, resulting in low efficiency levels and safety issues,” said Alexis Potter, sales and marketing director, Middle East and International, at AWP retailer and rental company, Rapid Access Gulf.

“We see it as our duty to ensure our clients can work efficiently and in the safest way.”

A greater focus on worker safety, a large component of which is a machine’s suitability for a job, means contractors are increasingly employing the services of AWP businesses rather than relying on their existing, perhaps inappropriate, equipment and less-skilled workers.

To ensure the utmost safety and eliminate chances of user error, some rental companies will offer contractor and operator training, or provide their own trained operator along with a machine.

“Our clients’ safety is our priority,” said Rapid Access Gulf’s global CEO, Don Kenny. “The boundaries of keeping people safe will never stop moving. That's the challenge we all face. We believe putting health and safety first, every time, should always be our number one priority.”

Rapid Access Gulf has the region’s largest AWP fleet and provides products to companies across the oil & gas, petrochemicals, facilities management, construction, entertainment and aviation industries. It cross-hires and sells to other hire companies, but most of its rental and sales business is done with end users.

“Our range of machines includes electric and diesel scissors and boom lifts to ensure we can supply the right machine for every requirement,” added Potter.

“It is a very exciting time to for our company. 2014 has been one of our most successful years recently, but 2015 looks like it will be even better.”

Rapid Access employs more than 250 people across the Middle East at bases in all the GCC countries, and plans to grow its teams in all its regional depots over the next year.

“Our strategy for 2015 is to continue to invest in our fleet to satisfy an increasingly diverse range of needs,” said Potter “Our approach is to understand our clients’ needs and wants.”

Check out the full article here http://www.constructionweekonline.com/article-32099-high-flyers/1/