Wheel loaders contribute to sustainable quarrying

Southern Screenworks has more than 20 years of experience in New Zealand’s quarrying industry. As provider of various quarry operations, the company relies on Liebherr wheel loaders to deliver the highest quality workmanship.

Directors Brett Swain and Alan King appreciate their Liebherr wheel loaders for several reasons. They consume less fuel than competitors’ machines, saving the company money and helping to keep New Zealand’s environment green.

Southern Screenworks was founded in Christchurch, Canterbury, in 1994, when it started with one screening plant. Four years later the company bought its first crushing plant. Today Swain and King have a workshop at Aylesbury with a quarry attached to the site. Together with 29 employees, they are running 10 mobile plants, offering mobile screening and crushing services to all commercial, government, developer, industrial and agricultural sectors across New Zealand.


In 2007 Swain and King bought their first Liebherr wheel loader. “We decided to buy a Liebherr wheel loader because we wanted to be different in the market,” Swain said. “The cost of the machine was an incentive and the machine turned out to be satisfying in terms of capacity and economy.”

Southern Screenworks continued to invest in Liebherr’s machinery. Due to the good experiences with the first machine, another three Liebherr wheel loaders were bought. Today a fleet consisting of four wheel loaders – L564, L566, L576 and L580 – is loading crushing plants and carrying and stockpiling processed materials in the quarry.


Quarrying is seen as an industry that creates noise and causes pollution. Despite contributing significantly to New Zealand’s economy, quarrying is perceived as environmentally challenging – especially in a country where environmental compatibility is ranked highly.

Southern Screenworks is aware of its social responsibility; the directors put a lot of effort into keeping the environmental impact as low as possible. For that purpose, focusing on fuel economy is a first step.

The company’s strategy matches with that of Liebherr, which has been driving the development of wheel loaders with low fuel consumption for decades.

Liebherr’s hydrostatic drive is a key success factor. On average Liebherr wheel loaders require up to 25 per cent less diesel than other wheel loaders of the same size.

This reduction in fuel consumption removes a massive amount of pollution from the environment. For example, one litre of fuel produces up to 3kg of carbon dioxide (CO2). By saving up to five litres per operating hour, up to 15,000kg less CO2 is produced in 1000 operating hours.

Southern Screenworks is not only more environmentally friendly with its Liebherr wheel loaders but it also saves money due to Liebherr’s fuel economy. “There is no other brand in the market that gives us the fuel savings we get from our Liebherr wheel loaders,” Swain said.

The hydrostatic drive offers other advantages for Southern Screenworks. “Besides the remarkable fuel savings, there is hardly any brake wear due to the hydraulic braking action of the driveline. And the tyres last longer due to the continuous traction control. All in all, we have less running expenses with our wheel loaders.”



The quarrying industry is highly competitive and smaller companies such as Southern Screenworks need to work efficiently to remain in the market.

In this context, Swain highlights the essential role of machine availability. “For us, machine availability is crucial to ensure a continuous workflow. Our wheel loaders operate 12 hours per day at the quarry face. If they were down for just one hour, the consequences would be fatal. The whole business depends on our loaders.”

Accordingly, service quality significantly influences the purchasing decision. In terms of service, Southern Screenworks finds Liebherr is one step ahead of its competitors.

“Liebherr machines are very durable,” Swain said. “However, in case of emergency, the service team is approachable and quickly on-site. The spare parts supply has always worked smoothly. The Liebherr service team supports us and we are satisfied with it. The team is down to earth and a reliable partner.”


Before buying a new machine, Southern Screenworks carefully assesses its performance. “On average, our wheel loaders handle about 1500 cubic metres of material each day, which is equal to approximately 3000 tonnes,” Swain said.

“Therefore, we need efficient machines with high capacity. We compared several wheel loaders from different manufacturers side by side, and when it came to capacity and economy Liebherr wheel loaders could not be beaten by any other brand.”

The staff at Southern Screenworks also appreciate the machines. “I am driving one of our wheel loaders,” one worker said.

“It operates smoothly with its hydrostatic drive, and the machine’s digging power is impressive.”

Swain confirmed this experience. “Our drivers are satisfied with the machines, telling me that operating the wheel loaders is easy and comfortable. Comfort is a prerequisite for working efficiently – and we have to work with maximum efficiency in our industry.”

The director also praised the price-performance ratio of Liebherr wheel loaders. “Compared with similar sized wheel loaders, the Liebherr machines are well-priced; you get real value for your money. Due to the high service quality, Southern Screenworks will continue to work with Liebherr in future.” 

Source: Liebherr Australia

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