News from Jost: When keeping to a tight delivery schedule it’s important that a quick turnaround can be made at the yard to prevent delays.
Dropped trailers caused by improper coupling at the fifth wheel can not only delay a vehicle’s schedule, it can also cause mayhem with the site schedule – not to mention the potential safety issues should the trailer uncouple while on the public highway.
To help speed up its vehicles’ turnaround – and maintain its spotless safety record – Harris Transport has specified JOST’s 36D pressed steel, 3-Sensor, sliding 5th wheel and FleetMaster handle on its newest fleet vehicle.
Since it was founded over 20 years ago, Harris Transport has been dedicated to providing a flexible and bespoke delivery and distribution service to its customers that is based on on-time delivery and total reliability. The company now boasts a fleet of over 100 vehicles, a modern warehouse based near Southampton docks and a delivery network that spans the whole of Europe. In order to sustain this continued growth the company has to maximise the efficiency of all of its operations and make sure that mistakes and delays are kept to a minimum.
George Harris, Co-Owner of Harris Transport, explained, “In order to make our operations as efficient as possible and to keep delivery times and customer costs to a minimum, we often do ‘drop and swap’ operations on our overnight deliveries. This makes sure that we’re always carrying a payload. However, we have found that on occasions drivers may drop a trailer at the delivery yard which can slow things down and could potentially be a safety concern.
“When I was specifying the 5th wheel for our latest vehicle I approached Jost, to see if they could recommend a solution to reduce the occurrence of miss-coupling. Having worked with them before, I knew that they would be able to offer me a solution.”
Jannine Burt, Regional Fleet and Sales Manager at Jost, added, “In addition to the standard 5th wheel, I was able to recommend additional technology which would make the drivers’ lives simpler when coupling the trailer and eliminate the risk of miss-couplings. I recommended that a Fleetmaster handle be fitted as well as our 3-Sensor system which monitors the position of the kingpin and warns the driver if it isn’t coupled correctly.”
The Fleetmaster handle improves the ease of operation thanks to an extended reach, which improves driver access to the dog clip and reduces the force required for operation thanks to the longer handle arm. Once the kingpin has been located in position on the 5th wheel, the 3-Sensor monitoring system alerts the driver if there are any complications which may affect the integrity of the coupling. There are three sensors which monitor the lock jaw, the king pin position and the trailer height; if any of these are out of alignment the driver will be notified by a monitor that is positioned in the cab.
George said, “Since we specified the Fleetmaster handle and 3-Sensor coupling sensor system we haven’t had a single incident of a dropped trailer, and all of our drivers have reported that it makes the process of coupling and uncoupling far easier.”