Snoplog – snow clearing at another level – the Mercedes-Benz Arocs clears Sweden‘s roads

2 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineFebruary 13, 2019

While here in New Zealand we‘re more likely to encounter melting tar at this time of the year, spare a thought for those in the Northern Hemisphere who are battling deep snow on the roads.

When the roads need to be kept clear of snow and ice during Sweden‘s winter, the only option is to call in the heavy machinery. Jonas Vykander uses an Arocs 3258 8×4, and from October to May, he‘s on permanent stand-by to keep the roads north-west of Åre in central Sweden open. Powered by an OM 473 with 425 kW of output, the Arocs with front-mounted snowplough drives approximately 91km towards Norway before returning in the opposite direction. The truck is also equipped with a separate laterally mounted snowplough measuring about 1.80m in height, and a third snowplough is located under the vehicle. The truck drives just a few centimetres from the edge of the road, and additional support comes from the spiked tyres on the first three axles. If required, Vykander can also fit snow chains.

Vykander takes about four hours to complete his route and he can be called out at any time of the day or night. Regularly he has to ensure 24-hour coverage, which he does with a further two drivers. All together, the drivers can sometimes clock up as many as 1000km per day. With that in mind, reliability is an absolute must – especially in view of the fact the drivers are often left to their own devices: for around 40 percent of the journey, there is neither phone nor two-way radio reception.

Vykander is never alone in his Arocs – Saika the dog is his trusty companion wherever he goes.