Ambitious Bury firm handles awards praise

A SAFETY device pioneered by a Bury firm is being talked about for a leading industry award. Walmersley Road-based Weston Handling developed the ACKBelt as an anti-crush safety device for forklift trucks. The belt, which is a registered design and patent pending, works by triggering a truck's in-built emergency stop mechanism in the vehicle comes into contact with either a pedestrian or piece of equipment.

Judges at the Fork Lift Truck Association (FLTA) have picked out the creation as a candidate for its innovation prize. The awards are said to recognise businesses which have created products or services that have made a fresh, creative or defining contribution to the materials handling industry. Bosses at Weston, which launched its own international website last November, say their system can also be integrated with existing telematics suites or can be supplied with a dedicated telematics package to log incidents and provide alerts to supervisors.

To date it is fitted as standard to all Weston Handling's range of reel, roll and shaft handling trucks. But it can also be retrofitted to virtually all types of powered lift trucks, according to the firm. Steve Weston, the company's managing director, said: "We are delighted that the ACKBelt has been nominated for such a prestigious award.

"To be included in the 'Pick of 2020' is a real honour, especially considering the calibre of the other shortlisted businesses, which include major international companies. "Weston Handling is proud to punch above its weight, using innovation and creativity to bring an element of 'David and Goliath' to this year's awards." Steve and his team will find out if they have been successful when the FLTA stages its awards night at the Birmingham NEC on March 21.

The company specialises in a range of roll transporters, reel turners, materials handling trucks and slitter unload systems.

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