Friday, September 27, 2013

A New Age of Rail Freight for London Begins as Group Reinforces Green Logistics Credentials in Japan

On Opposite Sides of the World Schenker Invests in Progress
Shipping News Feature

UK – JAPAN – DB Schenker Rail UK has become the first rail freight company to operate an intermodal service out of London Gateway, Britain's newest deep sea port and logistic park. The first train out of London Gateway left the port at 02:00 Tuesday 24 September, fully laden with containers bound for DB Schenker Rail's Trafford Park terminal. The containers had been discharged earlier this week from the fire-damaged cargo ship ZIM Rotterdam. Simultaneously the Schenker group was reinforcing its green credentials on the other side of the world.

As explained in our previous story, the 10,000 TEU ship was diverted to London Gateway from Felixstowe at short notice on Friday 13 September to undergo essential maintenance and is the largest ever cargo vessel to enter the Thames Estuary. This is the first commercial cargo to be unloaded at the new state-of-the-art deep sea port ahead of the official opening later this year and DB Schenker Rail says its staff worked tirelessly around the clock with their counterparts at DP World's newest venture to put an operational plan in place for transportation of the discharged cargo by rail. Charles Meaby, Commercial Director for DP World London Gateway added:

"We have worked quickly with DB Schenker Rail UK to ensure we can move boxes out of the port as fast as we can. We want to reassure cargo owners and forwarders that we are working around the clock to make sure boxes are despatched as soon as possible. This shipping line call was made under very unusual circumstances to ensure safety guidelines were met as soon as possible."

The news follows an announcement by DB Schenker Rail confirming the operation of regular services to Trafford Park and Daventry International Rail Freight Terminal from London Gateway when the port opens in November. DB Schenker Rail is the first rail freight operator in the UK to commit to services to and from London Gateway and, as well as door-to-door services to the UK's main hinterland destinations, DB Schenker Rail is also pursuing the development of rail freight services from the port into mainland Europe via the Channel Tunnel. Carsten Hinne, Managing Director, Logistics for DB Schenker Rail UK said:

"This has been an incredible effort and demonstrates how the team, and indeed the industry, has come together to help support ZIM and its customers. I haven't seen collective support from the industry like this in any way before and it's amazing to think we have put a service together in just a few days - let alone from a non-operational port. We realised that a solution was needed quickly and viewed this as an opportunity to help ZIM, the London Gateway team and the cargo owners in providing a service from the port.

"DB Schenker Rail UK has been working closely with DP World for a number of years to ensure this venture is a success for both our companies and their respective customers. We are very excited by this development and are confident that this will be the first of many services out of the new port. DB Schenker Rail UK is investing heavily in intermodal services, from London Gateway as well as from other ports, and we intend to offer innovative supply chain solutions with increased reliability, better quality and higher capacity than our competitors."

In other company news DB Schenker has opened its to date largest logistics center in Japan. It is located at Baraki, only 25 kilometres away from central Tokyo next to the Wangan Expressway. The Baraki Logistics Center with a total area of 33,000 square metres is a multi-customer facility, while a major portion of the available space is reserved for products and parts of the electronics industry. The building should be fully occupied by March 2014.

Location, seismic engineering, environmental technologies with 2,940 solar panels on the roof, a rainwater purification system and LED lighting which will help to save 30% enegy, and 24 hours security service make the building extremely attractive for customers from various industries. By applying principles like 5S/POP (permanent optimisation programme) and providing optimal work conditions in the integrated offices for the employees, the new logistics center will help the company to further improve its high quality services.

To prove the high standards of quality management, environmental care and work conditions the warehouse is expected to get TAPA-A certification by the end of 2013 and ISO 9001, ISO 140001 as well as OHAS 18001 (Occupational Health and Safety Assessment Series) by summer 2014. Schenker-Seino Co., Ltd., the Japanese arm of DB Schenker, combines the global network and knowhow of DB Schenker with the domestic state-of-the-art infrastructure of Seino Transport and is one of the major integrated logistics service providers in Japan.