Loading and unloading specialist Thorworld Industries has reported excellent growth in its dedicated service division during 2013, citing the current increasing preference of its customers to maintain and retain, rather than replace, loading bay equipment such as mobile Yardramps, dock levelling equipment and accessories.
Five years after the recession began, the company believes that its customers – especially small-to-medium enterprises – are still driven by the need to reduce outgoings.
As a result, Thorworld has invested significantly in its customer service in order to help customers get the best from the well-designed, high quality equipment that the company supplies across the country.
"We’re in a great position to really focus on our service and maintenance offering," explains John Meale, Managing Director of Thorworld Industries, "simply because the original loading bay equipment we create is so well designed, manufactured and installed. This gives us an advantage when it comes to extending equipment lifespans through regular servicing.
"We’re finding that customers really value our commitment to helping them maintain the equipment they already have by regular servicing, as opposed to purchasing replacement equipment," he adds.
John further points out, that taking a strong line with regular maintenance is not only financially advantageous, but also an investment in safety. He continues:
"There is no reason why properly and regularly maintained Thorworld equipment shouldn’t continue to perform while also meeting every current health and safety legislation.
"Our engineers are trained in the exact specifications of our own manufactured equipment, which makes us better qualified than an independent inspector when it comes to ascertaining which standards are simply good preventative maintenance and which are actually required by law."
John confirms that Thorworld is an accredited SAFE contractor member, and that its team of engineers have specialist regulatory knowledge to ensure every element of a customer’s loading bay is running at optimum safety – especially in times when machinery is being used longer and harder in lieu of reduced investment in new products.
"Our engineers have received specialist training," he says, "so understand that there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to maintaining equipment or installing further safety aids."
Their knowledge also enables them to appreciate subtle distinctions between what is required by LOLER (The Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations) and by PUWER (The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations), and how this awareness should be applied in practice to the relevant equipment.
Mark James, Thorworld’s Health & Safety Manager also adds comment, he says: "It’s widely acknowledged that the vehicle loading and unloading area has the potential to be the most hazardous area in any company, warehouse or distribution centre – it’s therefore imperative to have that area operating at optimum safety levels. Our service team can explain how best to operate the area, and advise upon and fit additional, low-cost aids to enhance safety further.
"It’s all part of the service" he says, "because at Thorworld we believe our remit is not only to create loading bay solutions that are built to last, but also reduce accidents, as well as long-term expenditure."
Mark says that even though the market offers an extensive range of safety equipment to protect against accidents, there is a lack of evidence to show that companies have safety strategies in place to ensure that such equipment is used and maintained correctly to effectively prevent injury.
His recommendation is to research and purchase loading bay equipment that is built for the long-haul when serviced regularly and comes with the peace of mind of an all-encompassing service back-up.
"From cornerstone apparatus, such as docking ramps and stations, to safety aids including traffic lights, trailer landing leg supports and moulded dock bumpers; we can design, manufacture, install, service and maintain each piece of our equipment to the very highest standards every time, ensuring our products last, prevent accidents…and constantly perform when serviced regularly."
THORWORLD Industries Ltd.
Station Lane Ind. Est.
+44 (0) 1246 260981
+44 (0) 1246 260493