Trailer Magazine

A bullish performer

  • From the April 2020 issue.
A bullish performer

Adelaide-based refrigerated logistics company, Eades Transport, is operating the first Schmitz Cargobull B-double combination manufactured in Melbourne. Demonstrated excellence in thermal efficiency through a long, hot summer has been a standout feature.

Darrell Eades, Managing Director of Eades Transport, started his business with one truck in 1999. Prior to this he was a diesel mechanic with International Trucks at Regency Park in Adelaide, having commenced his apprenticeship at the tender age of 15.

His first truck was a Kenworth K145 8x4 rigid tilt-tray which, along with subsequently purchased prime movers and low loaders, was used to carry heavy machinery and general freight including hay.

“Not long after I started operating trucks I sort of fell into the refrigerated transport and for a time I was doing both float and fridge work concurrently,” Darrell says.

Darrell’s first client in the refrigerated realm was Ingham’s Chicken and it wasn’t long before Woolworths also came knocking on his door. Before he knew it he was a fully-fledged refrigerated transport operator with a rapidly growing fleet to boot.

Darrell’s relationship with Woolworths has continued to this day with refrigerated haulage for the supermarket giant now making up close to 30 per cent of the company’s local workload.

Other work includes meat and seafood haulage to capital cities including Perth, Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney.

He asserts that attention to detail and providing top service are the main factors in the success of his business.

“If you provide consistently high levels of service you can charge sustainable rates which is the key to success in this game,” he maintains.

The company currently operates 47 refrigerated trailers and a handful of refrigerated body trucks, one of which is a Scania rigid sporting a Schmitz Cargobull body. This was Darrell’s first taste of the product and he describes the thermal efficiency and cooling capacity of this unit as “amazing”.

In fact, so happy was he with its performance that when the opportunity arose for him to trial the B-double, he grabbed it with both hands.

The combination fits the Australian B-double mould, comprising a 12-pallet tri-axle lead trailer with roll-back body in front of a 22-pallet tri-axle tag trailer, both fitted with barn doors and Thermo King SLXi-400 fridge units. 
Darrell has a contract with Aldi delivering to several country stores 363 days per year. Two of these are Nurioopta and Berri, both of which are kept stocked on a daily basis with the help of the new Schmitz Cargobull B-double fronted by a Scania R 500 prime mover.

“When (Schmitz Cargobull Account Manager) Andy Dinicol suggested we trial a  B-double set for a month my contract with Aldi was up for renewal so I took them up on the offer and they built the trailers to the spec I needed for this contract,” Darrell says. “As it turned out, I retained the contract and after the one-month trial I was more than happy to purchase the unit from them and away we went.”

Over and above general running costs, refrigerated carriers have the added cost burden of the fuel used to keep the freight at the correct temperature. In this respect, Darrell says he has been pleasantly surprised at how little fuel the Thermo Kings use to maintain the set point inside the Schmitz Cargobull bodies.

“The fuel savings with the Schmitz Cargobull’s are amazing,” he reiterates. “We often load the trailers on Friday afternoons and they sit in the yard with the fridge engines ticking over all weekend till the drivers leave on the Sunday evening. With the A-trailer, which has a smaller fuel tank than the B, it’s lucky to use a quarter of a tank over that period,” he says.

Darrell puts this down to the high degree of thermal efficiency built into the bodies, thanks largely to the superior quality insulation material and construction techniques used by Schmitz Cargobull.

He also likes the smart appearance of the trailers and the fact that they tow really well out on the highway.

“They look good, they’re good to tow down the road and overall I’m really happy with them,” he says. 

While the fridge units have the option of stop/start operation, Darrell says he runs them on continuous for peace of mind in protecting valuable cargo.

“Due to the fact that we carry a lot of high quality meat – it’s common to have $200,000 worth of meat onboard – I don’t want to risk it with the stop/start operation,” he says. “I just like to run them continuously which ensures a consistent temperature is maintained at all times.”

Darrell goes on to say that he also prefers consistency when it comes to the equipment he operates.

With this in mind, and also considering how happy he is with his latest B-double set, there’s a good chance the company will be taking delivery of more Schmitz Cargobull trailers in the future.

Fast Fact
Eades Transport is operating the first Schmitz Cargobull B-double set manufactured locally in Melbourne. According to Darrell Eades, the outstanding thermal efficiency of the trailers has translated to quantifiable fuel savings during the hot summer months.

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