Schmitz launches multi-temp fridge

Show LogoHanover, Germany:  Trailer maker Schmitz Cargobull continues to challenge the supremacy of Carrier Transicold and Thermo King for fridges and is extending its all-in-one reefer package by launching a multi-temperature fridge at the Hanover Show.

In 2012 Schmitz launched its first own brand fridge, a mono temperature unit. Around 300 Schmitz T.KM One fridges underwent in-service trials on Schmitz trailers with operators in Germany, the Netherlands and Denmark.

The T.KM One is an all-electric design, with a four-cylinder, 2.2-litre Perkins diesel engine driving a generator that supplies power to the electrically driven compressor and fans. Engine speed control is continuously variable rather than stepped, and two of the compressor’s four cylinders can be de-activated to save fuel when cooling demand is low.

Also at the show….

New trailer frame design
Schmitz Cargobull has a new trailer chassis design that replaces conventional I-beam main chassis rails with a Z-beam rail. The new rails are cold-rolled flat strips of steel, stronger and cheaper to make.

Schmitz-Cargobull FramesZ-beams have a thicker web than Schmitz I-beams: 7mm rather than 4mm for a standard curtainsider. Beam depth remains at 400mm, with a 120mm neck for a 15-tonne rating. Extra strength is added forward of the landing legs by bolting one of several reinforcing neck modules to the Z-beams.

The spring hanger-brackets are bolted to the bottom flanges of the main rails, through the rail’s web, reckoned to give a more stable connection. Schmitz says build precision is better as the absence of welding eliminates risk of heat deformation.

The first trailers with Modulos Z-beam chassis are curtainsiders, now called Genios, and by the end of the year 75% of Schmitz output will feature Modulos chassis.

Yearsley aims for 8% electricity reduction

Heywood, UK: Yearsley Logistics has committed itself to a programme of renewable energy as it continues to expand its cold store network of “Superhubs” in the UK.

Photovoltaic solar panels and LED lighting are fitted as standard to all new buildings, helping Yearsley Logistics to continue focussing on reducing electricity use by 8% by 2015.

These solar panel installations bring the group’s total use to 8,997 panels across seven of its 13 depots, generating 1,753,000 kilowatt hours a year with investment of £3.5m. The LED lighting not only uses less energy but also produces less heat inside the cold stores, which should lower electricity use, says Yearsley.

Yearsley industrial“We design our stores from the extensive experience we have built up through our previous store builds,” says Tim Moran, logistics director, Yearsley Logistics.“ We take what we have learned from each build we complete to create the best possible design for our stores.”

Russell’s Construction based at Trafford Park, Manchester, was responsible for both the design and build of the Heywood Superhub. Phase 1 of the new building has been operational from August 2013 and the second phase, which was built at this time, is currently being fitted out due to increased customer demand.

The new building is “super insulated” to help reduce energy use, making it one of the most energy-efficient cold stores in the country, adds Yearsley. It will also include rainwater harvesting to feed the cooling systems, which will save on fresh water

Yearsley is expanding its cold stores following “increased demand for our cutting edge services and hence increased demand for space in the cold stores”.

Innovative “vendor managed inventory” solutions has won the company a contract with one of the fastest growing retailers in the UK. As part of the deal the retailer’s food suppliers store their goods at Yearsley depots; orders are picked by store and distributed on Yearsley Logistics’ own fleet to retailer hubs across the country or distributed direct to store by Yearsley Logistics.

In addition, the cold store will include Yearsley Logistics’ first Power Automation Systems system, with half the cold store fitted with an automated racking system. In the long term this will speed up the customer ordering process and help to improve productivity, as well as having environmental benefits in relation to fewer door openings and minimal lighting requirements.

The company says that the three superhubs are situated in arguably three of the best locations in the country – Heywood, Hams Hall and Peterborough  – close to major motorways, and ideal for consolidating stock from around the UK and abroad.

Location benefits include reducing food miles and carbon output which ultimately saves on transport costs.

Managing director Harry Yearsley says: “Several years ago we saw that the frozen industry was moving to shorter lead times. Our strategy to embrace this by investing in Superhubs in strategic locations, as well as implementing new systems and processes should comfortably deliver this and maintain our industry leading position. We continue to lead the industry in building cost effective, sustainable solutions.”

CPC will make driver shortage worse

Shropshire, UK: The current driver shortage will get worse once the Driver CPC comes into effect this month, David Grocott, joint managing director, Grocontinental, told Cold Chain News magazine.

David Grocott

David Grocott, joint managing director, Grocontinental

Grocott says: “Attracting drivers into the industry is very much a problem and about to get worse as September approaches.”

To stay within the rules, all drivers must do 35 hours of periodic training every 5 years. The deadline for lorry drivers with acquired rights is 10 September to finish their first 35 hours of periodic training.

Drivers and their employers must stay on top of their Driver CPC training requirements or risk being fined and even losing their livelihood, the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) and the Office of the Traffic Commissioner have warned.

Grocontinental is finding that it has had to become much more innovative in its approach to recruitment.

“We’re looking at investing more into training local people.  We have an initiative called ‘Warehouse to Wheels’ where we advertise for warehouse staff who would like to become truck drivers. We select certain employees,and  invest in training them to become a truck driver.”

Grocott feels that the net for suitable truck drivers needs to become wider. “We will perhaps look abroad for drivers,” he says.

Along with competitive pay rates Grocontinental stresses that it operates new vehicles and trailers – its entire fleet of tractor units will be renewed by the end of the year.

Grocontinental’s customer base includes some of the world’s biggest food industry brands, primarily serving the dairy, meat and bakery products sectors.

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