P LONGER, HEAVIER VEHICLES
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Wincanton in 'longer semis' prediction
CM COVER STORY
DESPITE THE FACT that longer semi-trailers are still being assessed, Wincanton believes they could be an operational reality within 18 months.
The logistics operator is working with consultants that are compiling a report for the Department for Transport to assess their feasibility.
Wincanton has supplied eight detailed case studies from different sectors of the industry to the consultants.
It says more than 48,030 journeys could potentially benefit from longer trailers, cutting out around 2.1 million miles and 1.1 million litres of fuel, which equates to a saving of 2.9 million kg of CO?.
Dave Rowlands, Wincanton technical service director, says: "My feeling is [longer semis] will get the green light because they tick all the boxes: productivity, carbon footprint, fuel economy, as well as links to internx)dal applications."
Wincanton is working on two designs for dry freight and containers. Theoretical designs for a 15.5m trailer, making it 18.65m overall, with a rear-steer axle, would create space for four more pallets, which would reduce road mileage by 10%.
Rowlands says a 15.5mlong semi-trailer would improve compatibility on intermodal options for road/rail containers and "interface with railcars widely used by rail freight firms'.
He adds: "I hope there are not too many caveats on their use."