In the Samskip Multimodal Rail Terminal in Duisburg, Germany, the Dutch Intermodal Logistics Provider, Samskip, is committed to more safety on European roads. The Ventech Pneuscan system checks tire pressure and tread depth before the trucks and trailers leave for the road.
A 10 km/h sign guides truckers in one-minute intervals onto the Samskip Duisburg rail terminal. Driving into a covered facility, bright LED columns light up and the vehicles, license plates and unit numbers are ”scanned” by eight cameras. The wheels of the multi-axle transport unit will then roll over the sensor surface installed into the ground.
All tires are automatically and within seconds checked for the optimum air pressure and correct tread depth. The data detected by the system is immediately being sent to the car pool management in Genemuiden, Netherlands. At Samskip, the results are analyzed and necessary actions taken and coordinated all over Europe.
Fleet Manager, Tim van der Roest, explains: “Utilizing the automatic tire inspection by the Pneuscan system significantly reduces the procurement and breakdown cost due to fewer downtimes while increasing more punctual arrivals at the national and international Intermodal Terminals which consolidates our image at our customers. Last but not least, our transport units contribute to an increased traffic safety on European roads.”
500 passages per day
The railway terminal in Duisburg Hohenbudberg exclusively used by Samskip is relatively new, but conceived for dynamic development. The Intermodal turntable put into operation two years ago, handles the Samskip traffic and connects the “Rhein-Ruhr” region among others to Scandinavia, Benelux, France, Italy and UK as well as to the Baltic and East-European countries. The terminal utilizes the convenient transport connections to the four-lane L 473N and from there directly to the highway A 57 as well as the proximity to Logport I and to Chempark.
“Eight 750 meter long handling rails, two sidings and two gantry cranes in connection with two reach stackers ensure that up to 200,000 load units can be handled per year”, explains Frank Schneider, head of the Duisburg Rail Terminal at Samskip.
Despite the high overall traffic at the terminal, the tire inspection equipment, set into operation at the beginning of 2015, is integrated into the traffic flow without any problems. Manager Schneider: “Although we register more than 500 passages per day, there are no bottlenecks in the ‘normal’ process chain of the terminal services. The data feedback does not concern the drivers and transmits the measured data directly to Genemuiden.” The data flow is enormous. As the entire vehicle, towing truck and trailer or container, are detected by the camera system from Camco and the Ventech Pneuscan system, around 10 MB of data are saved per passage.
An inspector checks each transport unit with respect to its availability to ship for the intermodal traffic. At the same time a workshop and tire service make sure that any kind of intervention is possible within short times and efficiently and that downtime can be avoided as much as possible.
For the overall Samskip strategy and to be able to expand the pan-European networks via rail, water and street, big investments are being made. The company’s philosophy entails economic efficiency, ecology and safety.
Fleet Manager Tim van der Roest confirms: “When we decided to purchase the Pneuscan equipment, we considered the benefits of sustainability as well as immediate advantages. With the investment in the tire inspection system, we intended to lower costs, increase traffic safety and last but not least to contribute to a cleaner environment.” The current evaluation of the detected data on tire pressure and tread depth shows that the number of tire breakdowns and the tires replaced per year on trucks, trailers and container chassis is clearly decreasing.
“With the Pneuscan system, we expect to reduce breakdowns by 80%”, says the head of the car pool.
For its commitment with respect to “automatic measuring system for tire pressure and tread depth”, Samskip was awarded the first Prize by the Dutch ministry of transport Rijkswaterstaat.
As the already proven concept of automatic tire inspection Pneuscan can be expanded, Duisburg and Genemuiden are currently considering new applications. Together with the Sales Manager Frank Stelling from Ventech Systems, the Fleet Manager Tim van der Roest and the Terminal head Frank Schneider are discussing new software solutions and the application of additional Ventech tools like the detection of axis load.