Australia is famously described in Dorothea McKellar’s iconic poem as a, ‘land of droughts and flooding rains.’ And it’s a reputation our beautiful country never fails to live up to. But unfortunately for many South Australian residents, the state has been stuck squarely in the drought component of that equation for well over a decade. With many residential areas around Adelaide relying on tank reserves for water, Mt Barker couple, Rick Barrand and Tracy Wise, saw an opening in the marketplace and started Adelaide Hills Water Transport. Before the first drop could be delivered, Rick and Tracy shopped around for the right trucks for the job – balancing their need for a 9,000 litre payload with that all-important reliability. They eventually settled on two Isuzu FVR 1000s, which offered the flexibility to navigate the tight confines of residential properties with ease, as well as the durability to tackle the steep terrain of the Adelaide Hills. “My background is in farming and civil construction and I had an Isuzu years ago that was really good, and very reliable, so I knew buying these trucks would be an investment,” Rick said. “We test drove a few others but the Isuzu was a much better unit: more powerful, a lot tougher, and it offered a better resale value than other trucks out there. “The trucks are so agile and it gives us the access we need to operate effectively in those hard-to-reach jobs.” Adelaide Hills Water Transport offers a range of services, from filling residential water tanks and swimming pools to ‘hosing down’ dusty construction sites after a building job. With the jobs coming thick and fast, and scheduled for any time of the day or night, Rick and Tracy work on call, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. “At the minute it’s seasonal work, and we have a few competitors, but we’re confident we can establish a solid reputation by providing consistent, reliable service,” he said. The business services the Adelaide Hills region, Barossa Valley, Murray Lands, City of Adelaide and the Fleurieu Peninsula, delivering fresh, clean, pottable water for a wide variety of purposes, including civil construction, industrial sites and housing developments. “We have state of the art equipment on the trucks that let us to pump off loads quickly and the hydrants supplied by SA Water allow us to fill at various locations on the run, which makes the business very adaptable. “We chose the Isuzu FVR because it was large enough to carry a full payload of water without losing power, yet small enough to get into tighter areas,” Rick said. With a GVM of 16,500 kg and a six-cylinder engine pumping out 221 kW at 2,400 rpm, Rick’s trucks make light work of the greater Adelaide terrain, even with a full payload on board. “Our customers’ locations vary a great deal. The Adelaide Hills region for example, is quite a large place once you start traveling from one end to the other and from job to job, so comfort becomes a big deal – which Isuzu provides in spades. “It helps that we can rely on the trucks to go the distance. We’ve had no breakdowns, or downtime at all,” Rick commented. “And the cabs are so comfortable.” This comfort comes via features such as an ISRI air suspension driver’s seat and Isuzu’s Digital Audio Visual Entertainment (DAVE) unit with a 6.2” LCD touch screen, DAB+ digital radio and fully integrated Bluetooth. It’s not all fun and games though, with the FVR 1000 laying claim to some serious safety credentials too. Driver and passenger airbags with seatbelt pretensioners, an ECE R29 compliant cab, ECE-R93 compliant Front Underrun Protection Device (FUPD), Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), cruise control and Hill start aid (HSA) all come as standard. Coil spring cab suspension and a front and rear stabiliser bar ensure a smoother drive performance that handles the greater Adelaide topography as easily as the highways and byways. “We’re doing a variation of runs at the minute with a few city jobs thrown in, but mostly we travel around small country towns. The Isuzu’s handle both environments very well,” said Rick. “My favourite feature is actually the visibility. The windows and mirrors are really big and well positioned, so it makes manoeuvring around sites very easy. They’re very nimble for big trucks. “I’d have no problem going with Isuzu again, we’ve talked about maybe going to the next size up in the future to carry more water, but so far we’re very happy. “There’s nothing we can’t do with them.”