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The Nelson Photo News



Straddling the Apple Harvest


Transporting the pallets of apples from the cool stores to the quayside with the greatest possible speed has posed problems for the New Zealand Apple and Pear Marketing Board in the past. But not any longer. By using straddle lift trucks similar to those in use in the timber industry for several years, the board's two vehicles are now able to transport six tons of fruit to the quays on each trip. Nelson is the only port at which these straddle lift trucks are operating for the cartage of fruit. In the past the fruit had to be loaded on to trucks for transportation to the main wharf, and then unloaded before being hoisted aboard ship a time-consuming and costly operation. This picture of one of the trucks shows the truck commencing the straddling operation. The driver is Gordon Walker.


This shows how the operation is carried out. The fork lift trucks place the pallets of fruit on a bolster (above) and the driver of the truck (right) drives right over them and lifts them on to his truck. Below is a picture showing a laden truck and an empty one. The trucks, incidentally, are New Zealand-made.