‘Oktopus’ Forklift Attachment Saves the Day

octopus forklift attachment

Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons (in the public domain)

Officials at Nestle had a problem. They needed to install delicate freezer panels at their Nescafe factory in Tutbury, Devonshire, England as part of a $340 million expansion.

The installation was essential because it would allow Nestle to have all forms of coffee production — including freeze dried, spray dried and pod technology — all under one roof for the first time in its UK history.

Unfortunately, the job was on top of an existing six story building.

Oktopus Rides to the Rescue

For help, they turned to ISD Solutions, one of the UK’s leading contractors specializing in the development, construction and maintenance of cold storage, firewalls, data centers, clean rooms, single-envelop, external industrial cladding and doors.

By working closely with Nestle from the earliest stages of design to final installation, ISD usually is able to provide the most cost-effective and innovative solutions, designed, manufactured and installed to the highest standards in the industry, according to a company news release.

The solution? Use a crane to lift a 1.8 ton capacity forklift to the sixth floor roof and leave it there for the three month duration of the project. Then use a forklift attachment nicknamed the “Oktopus” to handle the delicate installation of the freezer panels.

Careful Placement with Pinpoint Precison

The installation required the panels to be placed delicately and then moved accurately into position with pinpoint precision. Fortunately, that’s a task for which the Oktopus forklift attachment was specifically designed to do.

Still, given all the risks, the project came with a heightened sense of anxiety among company officials, according to Martin Wright, ISD’s contract manager.

“This application was on not to be taken on by the faint-hearted,” Wright said. “Due to the complex nature of the application, working at height, floor loadings and the installation by crane, McLeman Forklift Services Ltd. — a division of Linde Forklift Truck Hire — were the only manufacturer prepared to come up with a solution.”

All’s Well That Ends Well

At the end of the three month job, the gas-powered forklift then had to be carefully lowered back down to ground level by crane.

Fortunately, everything worked out the way it was supposed to and the Nescafe plant is now fully operational … thanks to some careful planning and outstanding execution.

Linde Forklift Truck Hire is one of the biggest forklift truck rental fleets in the UK. It has more than 10,000 trucks available for hire, including everything from pallet trucks to vehicles with a lifting capacity of up to 52 tons.



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