Bibby Distribution is hoping to solve the costly transit challenge of water-damaged paper reels after designing a concept trailer now on trial with international manufacturer SAICA Paper.
The new design, developed in conjunction with Don Bur, incorporates a variety of features to prevent water ingress from damaging paper reels, including a triple layer floor and armoured wraparound curtains.
The common problem of water damaged paper reels can prove expensive for manufacturers as they are required to replace damaged goods at their own cost. It is also frustrating for customers who are forced to wait longer for replacement paper to arrive.
SAICA Paper's UK Logistics Manager, Chris Johnson, says: "By designing and investing in a trailer that is tailored to our business, Bibby Distribution has gone beyond what you'd expect from a traditional 3PL.
"The new trailer they have designed will give us a huge competitive advantage because it should solve the problem of wet claims."
The trailer has been in operation since early January and has already received positive feedback, a noteworthy achievement not least as it works out of SAICA Paper's mill in Manchester – a city with an average 152 days of rain a year and the fourth highest rainfall in Britain, according to the Met Office.
Chris adds: "We're still very early into the trial but it's already proving more cost-effective and safer to run, with no wet claims to date despite very wet weather. If the entire fleet comprised this new trailer, I think it would completely transform our operations."
In addition to its water-proofing features, the trailer incorporates a number of features to increase safety and fuel efficiency.
A remote tyre pressure monitoring system warns when the trailer is at risk of a blow out, a roll stability programme has been specifically designed to prevent accidents, and a ground-level coupling system means drivers no longer need risk injury by going onto the vehicle catwalk.
Bibby Distribution collects, transports and processes around 400,000 tonnes of paper reels a year for SAICA Paper to packaging manufacturers across the UK.