Flogas Britain commenced a six-month pilot project to trail Michelin Solutions’ Effitrailer programme, which is designed to maximise trailer safety, compliance and boost efficient through increased trailer fleet optimisation.
Michelin Solutions retrofitted the programme’s telematics to 21 trailers divided across Flogas’ liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and liquefied natural gas (LNG) tanker trailer fleet, and also a number of specialised flatbed trailers serving its gas bottle distribution. The tankers transport LPG and LNG to Flogas customer sites nationwide while the flatbeds delivery, as doubling up as portable storage facilities for gas bottles in customers’ yards.
Effitrailer telematics are fitted with on-board datalink, tyre pressure monitoring system, electronic braking system data analysis and can provide constant geolocation.
The fleet manager at Flogas, Stephen Moir says: “Maximising safety and compliance is our number- one priority, and that’s why we’re piloting Effitrailer. Michelin solutions told us it will help to keep a closer eye on the condition of our trailers 24/7; checking tyre pressures, weight distribution, and even if a delivery is on time – and we wanted to put it to the test.
“It should give us the ability to react fast to any tyre-related issues before they become a problem, boosting fleet uptime. Plus, should an issue crop up during a delivery, we can direct the driver to the nearest tyre dealer, or pass on precise location data to a mobile service van.”
He adds: “It’s still early days, but so far we’ve been particularly impressed by the programme’s geolocation capabilities, which remain active even when the trailer is disconnected. This means Effitrailer can keep tabs on our flatbeds, which can sometimes sit in a customer’s yard for weeks at a time. What’s more, before we arrive to collect the trailer, we can already have checked the tyre pressures remotely and know it’s ready to roll. This could potentially be a huge time-saver.”
There are 21 retrofitted trailers that are part of a 500-strong fleet of commercial vehicle assets, which ranges from 3.5 tonne light commercial vehicles to 44-tonne articulated trucks.
With Flogas being an Effitrailer customer, they also have access to a full suite of real-time data generated by the Micheline solutions programme – designed to enhance fleet efficiency and provide an opportunity for in-depth forward planning. The reports show detail about each vehicle’s mileage, the length of any period of abnormal downtime or ‘wait-time’, the ‘unhooked’ or ‘towed’ status of the asset, and whether the trailer is overloaded.
Flogas will also benefit from a commitment by Michelin solutions to reduce the number of tyre- related trailer breakdowns by up to 50% on all trailers equipped with Effitrailer. This is possible because the on-board TPMS system provides constant analysis of tyre status, helping to inform a proactive tyre maintenance and replacement programme – cutting fleet downtime, improving safety and reducing the potential for costly roadside breakdowns.
Regardless of the age or manufacture of the trailers equipped with EBA, the Effitrailer can be installed and Effitrailer is also available regardless of current or future tyre policy.
The Effitrailer package Additional optional capabilities, including ‘asset ID’, which identifies which Effitrailer-equipped asset is linked to which tractor unit, for better monitoring of subcontracted business.The package also has the capability to display temperature inside the trailer, while door opening sensor provides assures security for operators, flagging any abnormal openings off the logged route, or at unusual hours of the day.
Flogas established more than 30 years ago, and is a major supplier of LPG, LNG, and Main Gas. The company provides energy solutions to domestic and business customers across the UK. Flogas logas fits Michelin new and Michelin Remix tyres under a separate contract with national service provider ATS Euromaster.