NMO Report Highlights Weighbridge Accuracy Concern
- 07 May 2012
- Company & Industry News
Avery Weigh-Tronix forewarns that the latest annual report from the National Measurements Office (NMO) raises concerns over the calibration accuracy of weighbridges. As a result, the year ahead will see the NMO focus its efforts and increase inspections in this area.
The report references the LG Regulation project (2010-11) that tested 352 weighbridges at landfill and recycling centres. Of these 90 or 25.5% of weighbridges were found to be outside of their legally allowable tolerances.
As a result, the report concludes with a risk matrix that places weighbridges in the 'very likely' bracket for potential failure and as having 'very high' impact of risk. Avery Weigh-Tronix predicts that the NMO will be carrying out an increased number of weighbridge inspections in the coming year.
With this in mind, Mo Bott, product manager – service at Avery Weigh-Tronix advises companies using weighbridge equipment to take action, "ensuring that your weighbridge is maintained and calibrated regularly will put your company in good stead for an inspection.
"Failure of a weighbridge inspection could potentially result in a fine, and ultimately, the closure of your site.
"The current economic times have seen a reduction in the market uptake of weighbridge service packages from some suppliers, but I would argue that this is counterproductive. It may be tempting to cut costs by reducing the service cover on equipment, down grading service supplier or even risking a period without cover. But these cost cutting measures would be a false economy should there be a problem that results in unscheduled and costly downtime.
"It makes good business sense to maintain your weighbridge. Having a healthy weighbridge means that revenue coming into an organisation can be monitored and recorded. It will also keep downtime to a minimum, as unprecedented repairs will become less likely. Instead, any downtime can be scheduled around the needs of the business.
"The cost of preventative maintenance is always cheaper than emergency repair. As downtime increases the amount of lost revenue also accumulates and this can easily tally up to become thousands of pounds an hour. Equally, if a scale's calibration is recording under-weight then the organisation will continually lose revenue with every transaction until the error is rectified.
"Having accurate weight data is important to a company's operations. If the weigh data is incorrect from the weighbridge in the first instance, there will be a domino effect throughout the whole organisation. For example, reliable information is needed in order to collect landfill charges, create invoices for goods purchased and make informed changes and efficiency savings. Service providers should also keep you in touch with the latest technology to help you maintain a competitive edge.
"So, take heed of the NMO report, and ensure that your weighbridge is inspection-ready as well as operating efficiently for your business. The easiest way to ensure this is with regular housekeeping supplemented with an effective service contract."