Trailer Magazine

Maximum gain

  • From the February 2018 issue.
Maximum gain

When Investing in tailored tankers for improved productivity and safety, transport and logistics giant, Toll, turns to original equipment manufacturer, General Transport Equipment.

Just over a decade ago, logistics juggernaut, Toll, expanded its road transport operations across Western Australia, investing in established businesses to complement its freight tasks between Perth and the Pilbara region. Mitchell Logistics, based in Kewdale, was one of those acquired businesses, bringing a relationship with trailer builder, General Transport Equipment (GTE), to supply and maintain custom spec’d tankers.

Based on GTE’s longstanding rapport with Ammomium Nitrate Emulsion (ANE) tanker clients, and its history of supplying innovative tanker builds, Toll’s decision to invest in GTE was based on merit and the long-term partnership it had established, according to Justin Page, Technical Sales Manager at GTE. With Toll’s uptake of major ANE contracts, it needed an experienced OEM to supply innovative trailing equipment to support its ever-growing road transport network.

“GTE has more than 15 years of experience in the design and manufacture of ANE tankers,” Justin says. “The ANE product is known to have a high viscosity, in that does not flow very well, presenting trailer builders with a number of challenges – especially during loading and unloading.”

According to Justin, Toll needed to increase its ANE tanker fleet, requesting maximized payload, a requirement to run quad combinations as well as focusing on an efficient design. “Toll commissioned a total of 36 ANE tankers and 18 dollies, equating in nine quad tanker combinations.”

Justin says the first challenge to overcome with the ANE tankers was to tweak its default design, specifically the shape and the internal workings. “A typical tanker has baffles for structural integrity as well as controlling where the load will sit in the cargo space. Loads such as water tend to move freely in a tanker chamber whereas ANE is less likely to move. In this instance, GTE removed the internal baffles to ensure a smoother product flow, significantly reducing load and unload times,” he says – adding that downtime between pickup and delivery is minimised, aligning with Toll’s commitment to boost efficiency.

As per Toll’s specification to run quad tanker combinations, it also needed a configuration that could be scaled down to improve performance in metropolitan areas where access can be problematic, according to Justin. “Toll will have better versatility in its fleet where it can split two quad combinations into three smaller combinations that will fit within the specific route requirements,” he says – adding that GTE is one of few original equipment manufacturers in the region that can produce ANE tankers to Toll’s stringent requirements.

Justin explains that Toll’s standard for the ANE tankers aligns with the logistics company’s focus on safety.

“These tankers feature tri-axle disc brakes from BPW, Electronic Braking Systems (EBS) and Electronic Stability Control (ESC) – all suited for off-road freight activities. Also, there are automated processes that ensure that the tanker can be loaded safely from height without requiring an operator to climb on top of the equipment."

Normally, GTE would produce a tanker combination within 22 weeks, or five months, according to Justin, and had to adapt its operations to produce a tanker combination ready for delivery on a fortnightly basis to fulfill Toll’s tall order. “To meet the deadline comfortably, GTE upgraded its facility as well as utilising their international factories to help complete the order.”

Fast Fact
Ammonium Nitrate Emulsion (ANE) is a product widely used in the mining and industrial industries as a key ingredient for bulk industrial explosives.

General Transport Equipment
159 McDowell Street
Kewdale WA 6105
Ph: 08 9352 4000

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