Co-op takes plunge with radical Gray & Adams Dolphin trailers 05 December 2012

The Co-operative has become one of the first customers to take delivery of a radical new refrigerated aerodynamic truck body, launched this month (December) by Gray & Adams.

The so-called Dolphin (named in honour of the streamlined profile of the aquatic mammal seen in the Moray Firth, close to Gray & Adams' Fraserburgh HQ) features all- leading-edge cappings that follow the 3D curvature of the roof, and a vortex generator, claimed to smooth the airflow around the back of the vehicle.

The Co-operative's two Dolphins were built at Gray & Adams' Dunfermline production facility and have been fitted to 26-tonne Scania chassis, with roof-mounted, adjustable air deflectors by Hatcher Components, and Carrier Supra 950 refrigeration unit mounted above the cab roof.

Despite the body's pronounced roofline taper towards the rear of the truck, the interior comfortably accommodates The Co-op's roll cages which transport frozen and chilled product.

Indeed, Ken Thompson, logistics service transport fleet manager for The Co-op (is responsible for a fleet of 2,700 rigid trucks, tractor units and trailers), explains that the reduced roof height offers an environmental benefit: energy is not wasted on cooling empty load space.

"We're always keen to explore any opportunities to cut costs, especially our fuel bill, while at the same time reducing our carbon footprint and improving our environmental profile," comments Thompson.

"The new Dolphin represents a very exciting development... We will be monitoring their performance, in terms of fuel efficiency, with great interest over the coming months," he adds.

Meanwhile, in other news, Gray & Adams has also now delivered several 15.65m semi-insulated dry freight trailers, which The Co-op is running as part of the DfT's (Department for Transport) longer semi-trailers trial.

Based in Coventry, these trailers deliver to stores in Leicester and Ipswich that cannot be accessed by double-deckers, because of local height restrictions. The 15.65m trailer can accommodate up to 60 roll cages, still well shy of the 81 that can be carried on a double-decker, but a useful 17.6% increase on the 51-cage capacity of a single-deck 13.6m trailer.

"Experience has shown that Gray & Adams' products give us a high degree of reliability with very little downtime for seven, eight and sometimes up to 10 years," states Thompson.

"Gray & Adams will also customise their designs to meet the precise requirements of our operation. And while we get very few issues with their equipment, when these have arisen, the response has always been first class."

Brian Tinham

Related Companies
Gray & Adams Ltd
Scania (Great Britain) Ltd

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