The remarkable story started with Keith Matthews working at the quarry in the 1950s before it was closed in 1952. He later purchased it in 1980 and reopened it with his sons Rob and Graeme.
Their start-up plant included two Volvo tippers and a Chamberlain backhoe.
Today, the Matthews quarry in Gippsland is considered the most modern in the region. Employing 26 staff, the quarry produces A-grade aggregates, averaging about 300,000 tonnes per annum. It has a capability of 500,000 tonnes annually. The aggregates are supplied from Mornington Peninsula to the New South Wales border and within a 200km radius of the quarry.
Matthews Quarries? materials have been used in roadworks throughout the state by companies including Fulton Hogan, RDS, Cranes, Gippsland Asphalt and VicRoads, as well as by various shires.
Its equipment fleet includes five Volvo A35 and A40 haulers, as well as a 1995 vintage BM35, which is still in good working mode. There are also five excavators, including Volvo EC700 and EC480D models, a Volvo MC105C skid steer, three loaders, including a Volvo L250G, nine trucks, eight of which are Volvos, and a dozer and two graders.
In 2007, in a joint venture with Blackwood, the family acquired a 50 per cent stake in La Trobe Valley Sands. This site has five machines, including Volvo A35 and A40 haulers and an L180G loader.
In another joint venture with Blackwood earlier in 2003, the family opened Sale Mixed Concrete, in an effort to enhance the supply of the quarry?s materials.
Rob runs the mobile plant, Graeme manages the transport side of the business, which also predominantly uses Volvo trucks, and sister Sharyn manages the administration.
Rob said the family company?s long-term relationship with Volvo had been built on a number of key strengths, including performance, efficiency, productivity and good resale value.
?You can be confident that you can put the key in, start them and go to work,? he said. ?Volvos are reliable and efficient machines that come at a competitive price.?
Rob added the Volvo L250G front-end loader saved 100 litres of fuel a day compared with other loaders and provided three to four tonnes of extra production per load.
The industry?s first 35-tonne weight class loader, the L250G features bucket sizes ranging from 5.1m3 to 10.2m3.
Volvo?s efficient 13-litre, six-cylinder turbocharged diesel engine provides more power while consuming less fuel, thereby enabling high torque at low engine speeds.
Rob said before acquiring the Volvo EC700 excavator, it used to take seven minutes and 30 seconds to load. The EC700 had since halved that, providing a major shot in the arm for production.
Andrew, one of Rob?s loader operators at Matthews Quarries, said the operator training provided by Volvo Construction Equipment?s national distributor CJD Equipment had been invaluable to help maximise output from the machines. He was also impressed with the operator comfort offered by the Volvos.
?The loaders are very comfortable and the A40 hauler is the most comfortable machine I have driven,?? he said.
The Volvo equipment has been supported by CJD?s on-site service, as well as the Volvo CareTrack telematics system, which provides information for better planning and smarter working, including fuel consumption reports, location reports and service reminders.
Source: CJD Equipment