The year ahead will see some major changes in the drainage industry as environmental considerations take centre stage. While our industry has a responsibility to help reduce the effects of global warming, drainage contractors need to be aware of new regulations and the implications for their businesses.

Stage V of the new EU emissions regulations for non-road mobile machinery (NRMM) come into effect in 2019. In simple terms, this means that new engines will be required to show reductions in the output of carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides and particulate matter. This includes all diesel engines used in jetting and vacuum pumping above a 19kw output.

At drain and sewer equipment manufacturer Rioned, preparation for the new regulations has been several years in development. The company has made a major investment in the design and build of cleaner alternatives that offer the same level of performance, compactness and user-friendliness as its existing machines.

As an example, last year the company released its first Stage V compliant jetter, the ProfiJet Tier 4, equipped with a fuel efficient v48kW engine with built-in diesel particle filter. The manufacturer also produces compliant units that utilise petrol engines, such as the CityJet Petrol, available with a 37kW petrol engine.

ProfiJet Tier 4

The Urban Warrior, based on Rioned’s ProfiJet, is a Tier 4 compliant machine for the US market.

Rioned has also used this experience to produce compliant machines for the North American market, which has emissions legislation similar to the EU Stage V regulations. The Urban Warrior skid-mounted van-pack jetters, sold in the US by sister company Spartan Tool, are based on the company’s CityJet and ProfiJet units and have been a great success with contractors across the pond.

This year Rioned will also release its first production-line PTO (Power Take-off) drive unit, which converts power from an emissions compliant vehicle engine to operate jetting and vacuum pumps.

Based on the company’s popular 7.5t FlexCom unit, the new RioCom jet/vac combi unit is scheduled for release to the UK market in early 2019. It has been developed as a compliant solution but also incorporates enhanced features such as a more powerful pump and increased storage space.

At Rioned’s new headquarters in Thetford, the company is preparing its expanded facilities to enable the fast turnaround of the new RioCom combi, with multiple units expected for the UK market over the course of the year.

The RioCom is the first of a planned range of equipment that will utilise PTO technology. Expect some exciting developments to be revealed at Rokatech, the International Trade Fair for Pipe and Sewer Technology, which takes place in May in Kassel, Germany.

If you’re planning on replacing machinery this year, it’s important to consider the new legislation, particularly if you work in one of the newly designated low emission zones, where all machinery must be compliant whether new or old.

There is still time to purchase like-for-like replacement equipment. The new regulations allow for a transition period until mid-2020, during which machines equipped with the current generation of diesel engines will be available for sale. That said, engine manufacturers have a limited stock, so the advice is to act quickly if you want to secure a like-for-like machine.

 Jetvac combi

Rioned has been developing PTO drive technology for their combi and van-pack units over several years, including this bespoke project for a customer in 2017.