Abfallwirtschaft Region Hannover relies on Schmidt sweeping technology in wet and dry cleaning
For the staff members of the City Cleaning Department of Abfallwirtschaft Region Hannover (Hanover Waste Management Association), aha for short, the working day starts early. Very early. While many inhabitants of the capital of Lower Saxony are fast asleep, there is already a lot of hustle and bustle at the six locations all over the city. One sweeper after the other leaves the depots with their drivers. About 260 colleagues ensure clean and safe roads in Hanover using sweepers or winter service vehicles – among them a number of Schmidt Swingo sweepers, 21 to be precise. “We have been using our first Swingo 200+ sweepers since 2013 and are very satisfied with their performance and reliability”, says Mathias Quast, Head of the City Cleaning, Winter Service and Workshop Department. “That’s how a few vehicles at the beginning have become a whole Swingo fleet over the years.”
aha’s Swingo sweepers are operated up to 7 days a week. The day shift starts as early as 5.30 am. In the busy inner city around the pedestrian walkways and the station square, an additional unit is deployed between 2.00 pm and 10.00 pm, in addition to a staff member working on Sundays between 3.00 am and 6.00 am to clean up what is left from the night before.
“In the past, urban development projects have contributed to enhancing the attractiveness of the city centre and we are seeing an increasing use of the public area”, Mathias Quast says. “At the same time, these areas are expected to be clean at all times. However, it is exactly these extensively used areas that are subject to heavy soiling. Besides normal refuse, we have to cope with food leftovers, sticky beverage residues or rock-hard chewing gum residues on the pavements, which is a particularly challenging task during the dry summer months on light-coloured paving, such as that found at the refurbished Trammplatz in front of the City Hall. Especially during low-rainfall periods, the dirt on the paving is particularly persistent and cannot be removed completely by dry cleaning alone.”
According to a 2014 resolution by the City Council, about 47,000 m2 of light-coloured paving in the city centre therefore need to be wet-cleaned once a week during the summer months. Following thorough testing of self-propelled cleaning vehicles by various manufacturers, the Schmidt Cityjet 3000 street washer won the race. Boasting high pressure of up to 280 bars and a water temperature of 90 °C, it is capable of completely removing stubborn and dried-up dirt – even from sensitive surfaces of porous granite. Cleaning with hot water additionally eliminates the need for using chemical additives. The two Cityjet vehicles with an operating width of 1,400 mm are fitted with a washing head featuring two rotating spray arms. The machine collects the wastewater again, leaving behind nothing but a clean surface.
The two new Schmidt Cityjet 3000 street washers will be incorporated in aha’s vehicle fleet in spring 2016, helping the Schmidt fleet accomplish their mission of a “clean Hanover”.
“The opinion of our staff members is very important to us, which is why their assessment is taken into account when purchasing new equipment”, Mathias Quast explains. “Our drivers particularly appreciate the easy handling, the driving comfort, the intuitive control and the high suction performance of the Schmidt sweepers. However, the large tank capacity and the easy cleaning of the tank, filters, suction port and cooler of the Swingo play a major role. Apart from regular maintenance, our Schmidt machines need to be taken to the workshop very rarely compared to our other vehicles, which is also a crucial factor in our long-term calculation. Owing to our excellent relationship with the manufacturer, we can additionally incorporate our experiences from practical application into the products and we appreciate this opportunity of exchange very much.”
Schmidt Swingo also used in winter service
Hanover is a cycle-friendly city. It has set itself the goal of doubling the percentage of cycle traffic in the total traffic volume by 2025, which would then account for 25% – also in winter. However, this requires clean cycle tracks. The Schmidt sweepers can be fitted with corresponding winter equipment in no time to be employed on the cycle tracks or in the inner city of Hanover. “That’s when the Swingo vehicles with snow plough and brine sprayer will be in demand”, Mathias Quast says, in keeping with the mission of a “clean and safe Hanover” – 365 days a year.