Friday, October 29, 2021

The Snippets - a Collection of Bits and Pieces You might Have Missed

Some of the Smaller Transport and Logistics News This Week
Shipping News Feature

SOUTH AFRICA – Expansion of the Port of Richards Bay needed a complete geotechnical survey of the seabed which meant the very soft soils encountered at depths of more than 40 metres below seafloor required an innovative solution for positioning specialist equipment safely. This in turn meant shipping the required kit from Bangladesh and the UAE in challenging ground conditions and ongoing Covid-19 restrictions.

Fugro, the specialist marine site survey group headquartered in the Netherlands, was selected by Australian based contractors DRA Global to undertake the work and utilised two bespoke modular self-elevating platforms (SEPs) to acquire the high-quality Geo-data required. The results enabled the avoidance of any data gaps that could have led to an over engineered design and ultimately higher construction costs.

UK – In this National Lorry Week (25-31 October) one man who spoke up in support was BIFA’s president, Sir Peter Bottomley, MP for West Worthing and ex Minister of Roads and Traffic under Margaret Thatcher. Sir Peter is no stranger to the cab having worked as a lorry driver including an ‘interesting summer’ unloading trucks in Melbourne's docks.

In his 20’s he would routinely relieve the company specialist driver by taking export consignments to Millwall Docks on a Sunday night: sleeping in the cab, dropping the load and driving back to Watford so that the regular driver could take over the long runs. Eventually, after 15 years in Parliament, with appreciation for its years of use, he gave up his heavy goods vehicle licence. Nice to know that someone who speaks for the industry at the highest level actually has real experience in the subject.

UK – Logistics UK, is launching a brand-new, free-to-attend conference, ‘Next Generation Van’ to be held at the DoubleTree by Hilton in Coventry on 9 November 2021. Sponsored by Logistics UK’s Van Gold Partners, AA, Bott, Brigade, Hertz, Lex Autolease, Quartix and TVL, the conference will bring together key industry leaders, innovative thinkers, manufacturers, and operators to discuss the future of vans as the UK transitions to a net zero emission economy.

Sessions will include advice on effective maintenance of alternatively fuelled fleets, measures operators can put in place now to future proof their operations, and guidance on how to grow and attract talent in a time of critical labour shortages. To book your free place click HERE.

UK – Continuing with Logistics UK the lobby group has given a cautious welcome to this week’s government announced extension to road haulage cabotage, the system under which overseas hauliers can transport goods between two places in the UK after completing their initial journey.

Head of Road Freight Regulation Policy, James Firth has pointed out that, whilst the breathing space will enable British drivers to be recruited, trained and tested, it will lead to more drivers being forced to sleep overnight on the sides of roads or in insecure locations as HGV parking spaces are 1,400 short. This is due to allowing 14 days not 7 for non-UK hauliers with the adjustment meaning they will take mandatory weekly rest in the UK.

UK – Following the introduction of electric vans in London earlier in the year, DHL Parcel is investing a further £2.8 million to extend its fleet across UK cities by a further 50 new similar vehicles. Globally the Deutsche Post DHL Group plans to have more than 80,000 e-vehicles on the road and 60% of last mile delivery electrified by 2030. DHL is committed to continuing the roll-out of zero emissions vehicles to achieve these targets, and across the UK businesses now has 129 electric vehicles in operation including the UK’s first fully-electric 16 tonne truck.

The latest tranche for the UK will be on the road before the end of 2021 and are all Mercedes-Benz eSprinter L2 models which have a range of 95 miles and a payload of 775kgs. DHL says the rapid charging and extended range of this next generation of electric vans makes them ideal for use in city environments, bringing down the carbon impact of last mile deliveries.

FRANCE – Crossbay, a pan-European urban logistics property platform which targets single-user distribution centres, has acquired a multi-storey urban logistics asset in Saint Denis for an undisclosed sum in an off-market transaction. The property, which is currently unoccupied, is being marketed to firms in the last mile logistics sector.

At 7,500m2 the property, located a few kilometres from Paris, features 3,500m2of ground floor space, with platforms for heavy goods vehicles and light vehicles, as well as single-level doors on three sides. The rest of the site is divided into cells of approximately 500m2 on the upper floors, with access to the quays.

US – From 1 November ocean container lines will have fees imposed on them by Long Beach and Los Angeles ports with the intention of resolving the excessive congestion seen recently. Delays on boxes left immobile will cost the lines around $100/day after 3 days for rail cargo and 9 days for truck freight, with a similar amount charged daily thereafter.

Pre-pandemic the average resting time for import containers was 4 days for local truck deliveries and just 2 days for rail bound freight. The new policy was developed in coordination with the Biden-Harris Supply Chain Disruptions Task Force, US Department of Transportation and multiple supply chain stakeholders with the ports promising to reinvest the fines in efficiency programmes.

TURKEY – Austrian transport and logistics service provider Gebrüder Weiss is taking over Istanbul-based 3S Transport & Logistics with effect from January 1, 2022. The Turkish forwarding company specialises in part load transports between Turkey and its key trading partner Germany. Gebrüder Weiss Turkey says the move doubles its transport volume and opens it up to more traffic with Germany, Austria and Switzerland. The takeover also means that 22 employees of 3S Transport & Logistics will move under the umbrella of Gebrüder Weiss Turkey.

GERMANY – WORLDWIDE – As of January 1, 2022 Dachser will be purchasing only electricity generated from renewable resources. This means that the logistics provider, which operates 387 of its own locations in 42 countries, is increasing its proportion of green power from around 60% to 100%. In Germany and the Netherlands, the family-owned company had already switched to green power beforehand.

In addition, Dachser will significantly step up its in-house generation of renewable energy and, as a first step, is installing and expanding photovoltaic systems on the roofs of its European logistics facilities and office buildings. By 2025, its current capacity will more than quadruple, to over 20,000 kWp of installed capacity.

NORWAY – German headquartered logistics outfit Rhenus will be represented in Norway from the beginning of February 2022 thus strengthening its presence in Scandinavia. For Rhenus, the new location is the first in Norway, and for Rhenus Air & Ocean it is the first one in Scandinavia.

The expansion of the existing global network is highlighted in particular by the close links with the Rhenus Air & Ocean locations in the Netherlands, Belgium, the United Kingdom and Ireland. In addition to air and ocean freight, the new location offers other services such as supplying offshore platforms, project logistics as well as logistical support in the areas of healthcare, mining, aid and relief services, renewable energy and perishable goods.

Photo: Fugro’s self-elevating platforms being positioned in Richards Bay ready for their geotechnical site characterisation for the planned port expansion