Industry Insights

Isuzu Trucks Carry Load For Underground Specialists ATS Mining Maintenance

Gold. Iron. Coal. Mining has always contributed to Australia’s economy and the industry prides itself as one of the country’s largest employers of highly skilled professionals. It is also an industry that leans heavily on the use of sophisticated mining equipment. From drilling rigs and blasting tools through to weight feeders, heavy machinery plays a crucial role in every aspect of the sector.

But what happens when the equipment fails?

Large underground mining equipment can be difficult to repair and, like any kind of machinery, needs maintenance for optimal functioning. And it’s professionals like ATS Mining Maintenance, specialising in mining machinery and component repairs, who work behind the scenes to ensure every piece of mining equipment runs at optimal efficiency day in, day out.

With over 25 years of experience, the ATS team boasts over 20 fitters, two auto electricians and two boilermakers, operating out of a workshop equipped with two overhead cranes in Kalgoorlie-Boulder in Western Australia. And because underground mining machinery can sometimes be hard to move around, the ATS team also provides field service to the Goldfields, Gascoyne and Murchison regions.

Knowing the value a reliable truck can add to the efficiency of the business, ATS Mining Maintenance owns two trusty Isuzu NPR 300s to support their extensive operations.

ATS Mining Maintenance Business Manager Dylan Nollas said, “We used to have other trucks, but we’ve sold them now.

“And ever since we’ve owned Isuzus, we’ve never really had any issues with any of them. The oldest Isuzu we have, we’ve had since 2004, and it’s still running.”

Their Isuzu trucks are mainly used in conjunction with their utes for field service.

“We use them to run parts around for services, or load them up with tools and whatever we need to fix broken or run-down machinery,” Dylan shared.

“We also work with a lot of mining contractors and operators of mining sites, which means we see rough worksites and gritty terrain. The Isuzu trucks are tough and reliable, and they handle the sites well.”

More recently, ATS has decided to bring their field services to the next level with a new Isuzu NQR 87-190, with a gross vehicle mass of 8,700 kg, running at 140 kW @ 2,600 rpm.

“We ordered it with a tray so it is ready to work, added an extra fuel tank and even beefed up the suspension.

“Everything is genuine Isuzu parts, including the gleaming bullbar,” recounts Dylan of the purchasing process.

Prior to the recent purchase, Dylan admits to find Isuzu trucks to be best of the lot, despite surveying other truck brands.

Dylan said, “I compared them very closely, but the Isuzus were undoubtedly still the best value for money.

“Not only did it have a more comfortable cab, it also had better features, and more accessories and options—all for better pricing.”

Their new Isuzu, now affectionately referred to as the ‘boiley truck’, does “everything it needs to do”, according to Dylan. And considering what the team at ATS Mining Maintenance does on an average day, that’s a lot.

“With over 25 years of experience, we do more than machinery upkeep and repair.

“We have a large range of service exchange components on the shelf ready to go. And we also do auto electrical work ranging from machine rewiring to general servicing. Our boilermakers tackle the smallest jobs through to the largest overhauls.”

But even with their workload, Dylan isn’t worried about overworking the truck.

“We haven’t used any of Isuzu’s aftersales support like roadside assist or Isuzu Care because, frankly, we keep our trucks well serviced.

“We haven’t had any downtime issues,” said Dylan.

Having worked for ATS Mining Maintenance for 11 years, Dylan has seen the company invest in its people and its resources, forming a close-knitted team who loves what they do—and the equipment they work with.

“If we need any further trucks for our business in the future, we’re going straight back to Isuzu,” Dylan concludes.