|A new electric timber truck, believed to be the first of its kind in the UK, will be hitting the roads in the Highlands as part of a forestry trial to help decarbonise the sector.
Scotlog Sales Ltd of Inverness has taken delivery of the new 44 tonne wagon, which will transport timber shipped in from the west coast to be hauled from the Port of Inverness to the West Fraser site at Dalcross.
The new “wagon and drag” truck – a rigid vehicle a trailer – is part of a three year trial testing two state-of-the-art electric vehicles to move timber, cutting down on emissions.
The Volvo truck is the first of their line to be produced in Europe and is fitted with a specialist Metsatek timber body and Ecco bolsters.
The truck is currently being trialled at the Port of Inverness before it takes to the road where it will be a familiar sight on the A96.
Scottish Forestry is investing £452,000 towards the trial which is partnering with Scotlog Sales Ltd, James Jones & Sons, the Volvo Group and Cleaner EV.
A second electric lorry (artic unit) is currently in operation in the south of Scotland with forestry business James Jones & Sons.
Welcoming the news that the truck is now operational in the Highlands, Rural Affairs Secretary Mairi Gougeon said:
“Around 7 million tonnes of wood are harvested from Scotland’s forests each year and transported to sawmills, board manufacturers and other processors, mostly on 44 tonne diesel lorries.
“The forestry sector is keen to use modern technology to tackle timber transport issues as part of its overall efforts to decarbonise and reach Net Zero. I’m pleased to see this new vehicle is now in operation and I look forward to hearing more about this innovative trial and its future findings.”