Events logistics firms are coping well with the prolonged wet summer, claiming the miserable weather is just “par for the course”.
EST senior manager Del Roll says: “Big outdoor stadium events usually throw in a rain date, it’s almost standard procedure, so the weather doesn’t stop us. We do the transport for most of the major acts that are touring; we’ve got Madonna and Bruce Springsteen coming up next.”
Chris Redburn, chairman and MD of Redburn Transfer, admits that the Isle of Wight festival last month was a nightmare but they still got the job done.
“It took 11 hours for our trucks to get there but the organisers had put tank-tracks down so we didn’t get stuck in the mud.”
He says there’s “nothing we can do” about the weather.
“Until we get on site at an event we don’t know what conditions we will be facing. If it’s really muddy we have to rely on tractors to tow the trucks on and off site. It’s usually ok where we have to park backstage at events as they will be concreted areas. It’s the punters that it’s awful for, parking on boggy grass.”
Redburn has Tom Petty, Pearl Jam, Simple Minds and Lenny Kravitz gigs coming up to name but a few.
Lancashire-based Matthew Kibble Transport had its first cancellation of the summer last weekend when M-Fest at Harewood House, Leeds, was abandoned due to fears of flooding.
“We’d already got two trucks on site and then they cancelled it,” says MD Matthew Kibble. “We had to load back up and come back.
“It’s just a horrendous summer at the moment. It’s not great for our sector but we are just getting on with it,” he adds.
“We’ve been quite fortunate as we’ve not had any major cancellations," says MD David Steinberg, "For M-Fest, however, we had already loaded up for Paul Heaton (ex-Beautiful South singer) on the Thursday, when we got an email about it being cancelled. We quickly contacted our colleague in Glasgow who was loading up a truck for Texas also for the event to let them know."
Steinberg says that his family-owned business will still get paid for any services provided, even if an event is cancelled at the last minute, as organisers will have insurance policies in place for such circumstances.
He adds that temporary flooring, such as supplied by Eve Trakway, is often laid down by organisers in the event of wet weather, which allows ease of access for LGVs making deliveries
KB Event says it hasn’t been involved in an event that has been cancelled as yet. “Our weather is difficult to track and so our plans can change on a day to day basis around each specific event. Every event is different so therefore every contingency plan is different, there are no hard and fast rules,” says company secretary Leanne McPherson.
“With trucks at a premium this summer due the amount of events that we don’t not normally have, planning and scheduling is even more crucial. For us it’s about having fleets at events that are in close geographical proximity so that if the need arises, you can get trucks over to other locations," she adds.