NASHVILLE, Tenn.-In response to what it called a ``growing need'' in the off-the-road tire market, Bridgestone/Firestone Off Road Tire Co. (BFOR) has formed a new company to handle the on-site shredding of its customers' scrapped OTR tires. Formed in late September, Tire Solution West, based in Menifee, Calif., has begun operating its mobile shredder, which can process any bias or radial OTR tire.
BFOR, an operating company of Bridgestone/Firestone Inc., said it has invested more than $1 million in the venture. The mobile unit,manned by two operators, comprises a Diamond Z Manufacturing shredder powered by two 600-hp diesel engines, a large wheel loader for loading the tires into the shredder, a highway tractor, a dry van and a pickup truck.
``This is the only mobile shredder unit available which is capable of handling giant off-the-road tires,'' said BFOR President Bob McNally. ``It can quickly reduce a 5-ton radial tire to manageable, small pieces.''
The greatest need for the shredding service is at mining sites and landfills, the company said. The mobile unit eliminates the high cost of hauling large OTR tires, some of which tower 13 feet high, to a permanent shredding site miles away, a spokeswoman said.
Tire Solution West is based on the West Coast due to the number of large mining operations in that part of the country. Currently, there are no plans to expand the operation to the east, the spokeswoman said.
``A fee will be charged for shredding the tires, which will be reduced to pieces ranging from 2 to 8 inches, depending on the customer's requirements,'' Mr. McNally said. The fees are negotiable based on volume, the spokeswoman added, and generally range from $52 to $100 per ton.
The tire shreds are left at the site for the customer to use or dispose of. Some mining companies use the shreds as a base for access roads, and landfills can use the material as liners and ground cover at their sites.
Tire Solution West may eventually make a profit, but the new firm also offers ``a very needed service,'' the spokeswoman said.
Already, the new firm has several customers lined up, she said.
For more information, contact Tire Solution West at (800) 274-4799.