Old Dominion Freight Line Inc. has been named the 2009 Fleet Equipment magazine and Citgo Petroleum Corp. Top Green Shop winner. The company’s long list of green initiatives demonstrates its commitment to being environmentally responsible.
According to Ed Richardson, vice president equipment and maintenance, Old Dominion Freight Line Inc., “Our interest in creating ‘green shops’ began several years ago. We started slowly and have made changes in all of our shops over the years. Recently, as a SmartWay Partner our interest increased. In addition, many of our customers have required that we be more energy and environmentally efficient.”
All 31 of the fleet’s shops across the lower 48 states have incorporated as many environmentally conscious programs and equipment as possible give the age of the facilities. As the fleet added green initiatives it became aware of several different operational benefits.
Tom Newby, director of field maintenance, Old Dominion Freight Line Inc., says, “Just simple things like dispensing units for oil and other vehicle liquids have made our drivers happier and the technicians really like the oil drain system that we’ve built. But the real benefits have been that we’ve been able to create a better working environment along with a more environmentally safe one.”
He goes on to say, “Our overall shop productivity has increased. All of the features we’ve added, like floor scrubbers, four-post lifts, energy efficient heating and cooling an 8-ft. ceiling fan, too, have made the shops more worker friendly. It has also added to our technician retention rate, which means fewer dollars spent on training replacement techs.” The technician turnover is about 5% annually out of 350 technicians.
Both Richardson and Newby agree that one of the best investments has been the installation of the four-post lifts. Richardson says, “The lift has given technicians better access to vehicles, which has make it easier to service and maintain equipment. Another wonderful addition has been the rotary screw air compressors, which are amazingly quiet and add to our noise abatement efforts.”
The fleet has worked with its shop facility suppliers, especially as it has built new faculties, to add more “green” systems. The company has installed drive-through truck washers at several of its newer sites that include custom build oil water separators under the wash bay to collect and recycle wash water.
Being environmentally friendly has also helped the fleet be a better neighbor, Newby says. “It is sometime tough to get permits to build new shops and terminals in certain municipalities, but we have found greater acceptance because of our green initiatives.
The fleet remains committed to creating environmentally safe shops. Richardson notes, “We have and are still making all of shops ‘green’ to the extent that we can given the ages of the buildings.”
Old Dominion Freight Line Inc. won the award based on the following achievements:
Shops are guilt with tilt-wall construction for less maintenance and for better insulating factors and include T5 energy efficient tube lighting and skylights.
All floors are sealed concrete with mops and floor scrubbers in each shop, no floor-dri allowed.
Infrared radiant natural heaters, which better direct heat.
Eight-foot ceiling fans.
Roofing material is Solar Reflectance Index 80.
All HVAC is energy efficient.
Zero use of CFC refrigerants
Infrared sensor faucet
Automatic flush valves, tank-less and point-of-use water heaters
Four-post lifts for PMs.
All trucks and forklifts have Femco Quick disconnects so oil can be pumped from oil pan to waste oil tank.
Waste oil, filters and antifreeze picked up by licensed disposal company. All materials recycled.
Go Rags versus shop rags since no cleaning is involved, just proper disposal.
Mounted wheel program, no voids for water/mosquitoes.
Wheel refurbishing program with tire supplier, no spraying of wheels in the shops.
All oil/water separators pumped on a regular schedule by licensed provider.
All parts washers cleaned by licensed provider.
Insulated/electric roll-up doors.
Rotary screw air compressors for noise abatement and energy efficiency.
Drive through truck washer with non-hydrofluoric cleaners and low-pressure nozzles; water conservation electronic eyes on nozzles that divines spray area (save 160 -200 gal per cycle). Chemical pumps are water driven, which reduces size from 50 to 30 HP and there are sand traps in truck wash that lead to oil water separator.
Fuel systems card lock systems with breakaway hoses.
All bays are sealed and equipped with spill containment kits.
Batteries are stored in racks and cycled out by supplier.
All drums are on spill containment pallets.
Shops are equipped with CO2 monitoring systems and air make-up units.