Infrastructure services firm Eurovia has bought a new Mercedes-Benz Actros tractor unit with a King low-loader semi-trailer.

The 44-tonne rig has been specified for operation in London and the Home Counties and is being used by Eurovia Surfacing to transport road construction plant, such as asphalt pavers, backhoe loaders and compactors to and from sites.

The safety of cyclists, pedestrians, and other road users, as well as its own employees, was at the top of Eurovia's agenda and the trailer has been specified to reflect the fact that many deliveries and collections of plant are made in darkness.

The 6x2 Actros 2548 has a flat-floored StreamSpace cab with factory-fitted collar and air deflector. It is dressed with colour-coded bumper and mirrors and a roof-mounted beacon bar and Eurovia's livery which highlights the company's four decades in business.

The truck's advanced, 350kW (476 hp) straight-six engine drives through a smooth-changing Mercedes PowerShift 3 automated transmission and provides the muscle to pull the new, three-axled King low-loader.

Features include a new LED lighting system which is built into the shackle wells and illuminates the entire trailer, and a fall arrest system on the neck. It is also equipped with a side scan and four-way recordable camera system that meets the FORS (Freight Operator Recognition Scheme) Gold standard.

It is the first 'semi-slope' trailer designed and built by Market Harborough-based King Vehicle Engineering to make the job of loading and unloading heavy plant, and particularly rollers which are usually winched onto the bed, easier and safer for operatives.

The ramps can be widened to accommodate outsized plant. On conventional trailers they are hydraulically operated from the nearside only. But given the nature of the work and its commitment to safety, Eurovia has chosen to give its driver the option by fitting controls on both sides. To aid fuel economy, when the trailer is unloaded the ramps can be folded forward and lie flat, rather than being held in a vertical position.

Eurovia transport and plant operations manager Chris Dixon said: 'Mercedes-Benz is a well-established supplier to our business and the fleet includes a number of Actros, among them three of the four units that pull our low-loaders.

'It's a very good vehicle and has proved to be exceptionally reliable, while the manufacturer's dealer network also offers the coverage and round-the-clock support that we need ' we can incur large fines if we don't get our plant to site on time, so both factors are crucial.

'The Actros is also popular with our drivers, who appreciate their comfortable and spacious, flat-floored cabs and the excellent visibility that also contributes to safety'