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Nearly 400 industry guests attended a glitzy gala dinner and awards ceremony in Harrogate’s Majestic Hotel this evening (30 May) to recognise outstanding achievements in the tipper and tanker sectors.

Capping off day two of the Tank-ex and Tip-Ex 2014 exhibitions, the event saw four awards presented to companies and individuals who demonstrated passion, innovation, commitment and responsibility to promoting best practice in the sector.

Winning the coveted Tipper Haulier of the Year title - sponsored by MAN Truck & Bus - was Keltbray Plant, a division of the construction and engineering specialist of the same name, which runs a fleet of 36 tippers (an increase of one third from the previous year's fleet size). Judges felt the entry showed Keltbray was determined to prove its credentials and social awareness and “continually demonstrates a willingness to drive change and innovate”.

Scooping the Tanker Safety Award – sponsored by Feldbinder - was Hanson Cement, for the way it identified and successfully addressed two key safety issues on its new dual-purpose suction and discharge tanker: protecting vulnerable road users; and developing a solution that would enable the tanker to be operated whilst the tractor unit is switched off and locked. The company's detailed attention to fleet safety equipment and innovative use of technology impressed the panel of industry judges, who said the entry “demonstrated a thorough and rigorous approach to all areas of tanker safety, not just addressing cycle safety, going above and beyond current requirements”.

This year's Personality of the Year - sponsored by Hyva UK - was awarded to industry stalwart Roger Warnes for his dedication to the sector and passion for his work. Warnes started his family business in 1969, and, together with his wife and two sons, has built the company to a fleet of 85 vehicles carrying some 2.5 million tonnes of bulk materials a year. Judges learned he was a highly- principled businessman and a “notoriously hard-worker, putting in 14-hour shifts, seven days a week, despite the fact he is now into his eighth decade (aged 72)”.

Finally, taking the top spot for the Show Innovation Award - sponsored by Bandag - was Suffolk-based LITE-Wire, which won the title for its Pulse system - a signal-based device that simplifies the installation of wiring for trailer lighting or when retrofitting light-bars, beacons or interior work-lamps in vans or trucks. Judges praised the system for simplifying complex wiring and making it possible to create cost-effective, smarter and flexible vehicle lighting systems.

Full details of the award winners will appear in MT's sister title Commercial Motor's 12 June issue.