One missed haul: The benefit of fueling management solutions

One missed haul: The benefit of fueling management solutions

Your maintenance and equipment can be the best of the best, but no one can run a fleet on empty.

In the heart of a desolate construction yard, miles away from anything else, a lone truck sat shrouded in eerie silence. The driver’s desperate attempts to coax the engine to life were futile, and panic clawed at the edges of his mind as he grappled with the dilemma unfolding before him. The truck was in impeccable condition, a recent beneficiary of thorough maintenance. It had served him dutifully throughout the day, transporting cargo without a hitch. Yet now, with the sun descending behind the tree line, he faced a conundrum. His final delivery window was fleeting, a race against the impending night.

Abandoning the cab, he ventured out to inspect the mechanical enigma when, suddenly, his phone’s ringtone sliced through the silence. Expecting the wrath of his manager on the other end, he hesitated but answered, prepared to explain his predicament. But what he heard was not his boss’s anger, but something infinitely more unsettling.

It was his own voice, speaking words that defied reason. “I can’t believe I missed the delivery window,” echoed through the receiver. “We lost a customer all because I forgot to refuel.”

Chilled to his core, he disconnected the call and glanced at his watch, disbelief gnawing at his senses. The delivery window was open until 8:00, yet the time displayed was only 7:00. Still, the ominous call provoked an unsettling realization. When had he last filled his gas tank? Was this nightmarish isolation a consequence of his own forgetfulness?

After deliberating his options, he dialed his manager’s number. Help arrived, bearing a gas can and once the truck roared back to life, the driver pushed the boundaries of time to deliver the cargo on schedule. But destiny had cruelly spun its web, and the delivery window had come and gone. The load was turned away, and the customer, intolerant of anything other than satisfactory service, severed ties with the fleet.

“I can’t believe I missed the delivery window,” he whispered to himself, his voice trembling in the darkness. “We lost a customer, all because I forgot to refuel.” The chilling refrain of his own words haunted him, a relentless reminder of the inexplicable forces and lack of fuel that had conspired against him in that construction yard.

Your maintenance and equipment can be the best of the best, but no one can run a fleet on empty. That’s why industry providers have started providing off-site refueling units for fleets working in remote or desolate areas. These transportable systems provide a means of reliable refueling whether it be for equipment or vehicles. 

Depending on external suppliers and dealing with fluctuating fuel prices can result in missed opportunities for bulk-buying discounts. By taking charge of your own secure on-site refueling, you can exercise complete control over one of your most substantial on-site expenses.

I connected with Jeff Lowe, vice president of product marketing with Western Global to discuss the most beneficial application of refueling tanks, how they can assist in improving operations and save fleets money in the long run. 

What are some common needs or issues heavy-duty fleets run into when it comes to fuel management and operational efficiency?

According to Lowe, “There’s always needs outside of that permanent installation because of maybe an immediate need to increase capacity. Maybe they have six fueling lanes and they need seven because of an influx on some project that they’re working or some need. And they need to be able to increase their capacity quickly without necessarily having to go through all of the process involved in expanding the in-ground onsite fuel storage and fleet delivery system that they have already installed.”

As Lowe put it, the main goal is to increase capacity without extra complexity.

“You can start thinking about an aboveground storage solution that’s fully compliant and offers the same fuel management system on it so that when you need that capacity, you can bring it in, unload it, and just add diesel or just add gasoline, add the proper venting, get a quick approval from your local fire marshal or whatever it might be, and you don’t have to go through the process of digging in the ground, adding tanks, increasing capacity in that way. You can do it all aboveground, and it makes for a much quicker process,” he said.

In what ways does the cube-shaped design of the TransCube Global fuel tank enhance its transportability on truck beds, trailers, and within shipping containers? According to Lowe, the design of the container is purposeful.

“The TransCube products are specifically designed to kind of fit edge to edge, floor to ceiling inside of an enclosed trailer, on a flatbed, in a shipping container so that there’s no wasted storage, no wasted space, so that you can maximize. Whether it’s a 250 gallon tank or a 18,000 gallon tank that is the shipping container, can be shipped that way. It’s certified for shipment as a container loaded onto a container ship as the storage tank itself, or shipped inside of a container of a greater size,” Lowe said.

So which segments of the industry would this be most beneficial for? 

“Our primary app markets are in a construction or a new facility construction or commercial construction environment where there’s large-scale grading work being done, or lots of where they’re doing and building the civil construction where they’re putting in sewer lines, water lines, large scale where they have lots of heavy equipment that are requiring lots of fuel,” Lowe said. “Being able to temporarily put fuel in place so that they can service the needs and then take it away when the project is complete, that’s a primary use case.”

Another primary use case involves providing temporary power solutions. According to Lowe, this setup serves to supply power to various scenarios such as events, concerts, backup power for hospitals, temporary facilities in disaster relief efforts, or construction sites.

Fleet Equipment’s On The Road is sponsored by Wix Filters. Subscribe to our newsletter to catch every episode as we dive into the best practices and servicing information to keep your trucks On The Road.

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