Sunday, December 3

A remote-controlled lawnmower for the slopes of Badajoz

The new machine is being used in the gardens of the La Pilara urbanization. / ARNELAS JV

Security. The Department of Parks and Gardens has bought this machine for 38,000 euros to reduce the danger of working on steep slopes

Evaristo Fdez de Vega

The Department of the Environment of the Badajoz City Council has released in recent weeks a new lawnmower that allows remote control, a new system that is very useful when it is necessary to cut the grass on steep slopes.

Until now, these works were carried out by municipal workers who manually controlled the mowing machines, with the consequent danger of falling. The usual thing was to attach a lifeline (holding rope) to the machine so that a worker located in a high area could hold it if the gardener working on the slope was unable to hold it. The new system greatly facilitates the task since the machine moves freely under the control of a gardener who controls it through a control and five buttons. In this way, you can work without the need for a person to be next to you.

The Councilor for the Environment, Jesús Coslado, explained that the cost of the mower amounts to about 38,000 euros, an amount that he considers well used because it improves the safety of workers. The machine works with a gasoline engine that is supplied from a tank that has the capacity to work for a full day. This motor is what makes the blades work, but it also works as an electricity generator for the two electric motors that move the ‘caterpillar-type’ traction system it has.

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These rubber chains allow the machine to advance, turn and overcome unevenness on slopes that have a slope of up to 45 or 50 degrees, unevenness in which it was difficult to work with traditional lawnmowers.

The operator who usually handles this new mower is Juan Francisco Lopes, a 30-year-old gardener who talks about the ease with which the system is controlled. “It’s much easier than playing the Play Station, there are fewer buttons here and the job is done with ease.

Slopes of La Pilara

The new remote-controlled lawn mower works regularly on the lawn slopes of La Pilara and has also been used in the garden areas of Ronda del Pilar (next to the Palacio de Congresos). “What used to be done in two days is now ready in one,” explains Antonio Ortiz, in charge of one of the sectors into which the parks are divided.

It is also being useful at the head of the University Bridge, on Antonio Cuéllar Gragera Avenue (next to the bullring) and in the Rivillas parks, where it has provided support when necessary.

José Antonio Berjano, a first-class official in the municipal Parks and Gardens service, highlights its safety. “This has evolved a lot, 30 years ago lawnmowers kept working when you let go of them and that was a problem because they could cut you if you fell or lost control. Over time they incorporated a system that stopped the blades when you let go of them, and now we have these lawnmowers that work by remote control.”

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In the Department they remember that years ago a gardener lost a finger when a lawnmower ran over him.

Another advantage it provides is that it shreds all the grass it cuts, so it is not necessary to collect the remains later. The new lawnmower, which can mow 5 hectares in one hour, has been supplied to the Badajoz City Council by the company Badapool.

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