Logging up the miles in the Finnish forest

Logging up the miles in the Finnish forest

Since midsummer 2016, Juha Lapatto has been test driving a Scania S 650 6×4 Euro 6. He helps to ensure that the truck is tested to the limit on the tricky forest roads of Finland where he normally works.

As a child, Juha Lapatto knew that he wanted to be a truck driver. His father drove trucks and Lapatto used to accompany him on some of the jobs. The younger Lapatto has now been a professional driver for twelve years, spending all but one of those years driving timber trucks for Finnish hauliers Aho & Nuutinen Oy. The company is based in eastern Finland and transports logs and other goods such as construction elements and building blocks.

“The truck performs exactly as it should,” Lapatto says.Juha Ruuska

“A GOOD TRUCK TO DRIVE”

Lapatto has enjoyed testing the new Scania. “This is a good truck to drive,” he says. “And it’s always nice to be in a new truck. The cab is more comfortable and the visibility is better than in the older vehicles,” he adds.

His work involves transporting heavy timber loads off-road. He says that new technology has contributed to a better driving experience, as well as to reduced fuel consumption.

“This truck performs exactly as it should; it meets my expectations,” he says, ­appreciating the fact that he has had an input into the development work.

GOOD FACILITIES FOR SLEEPING

Today, Lapatto is on a day shift about 150 kilometres from Kotka in eastern Finland. Working in the forest means he gets to see a lot of the local wildlife.

“In my eleven years I’ve been out on many forest roads and I’ve seen almost all the forest animals, except the bear,” he says, laughing.

Being a father of four, he prefers daytime work. Although the truck has good facilities for sleeping, at night he prefers to be home with his family.

“I am grateful to my wife, who takes care of our four pre-school children,” Lapatto says. “She is very understanding when I do long hours.”

But regardless of the demands of his work, he feels that it is a good fit for him. “A truck driver’s job suits people who like working independently and being on the road. It gives you freedom.”

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