Refrigerated and dry freight trailer manufacturer, Maxi-CUBE, has delivered the landmark first 26 pallet Performance Based Standards (PBS) refrigerated trailer into Queensland. The first of its kind to receive PBS approval in the state, the van was purchased by specialist fruit and vegetable carrier, Fruithaul, who placed the order after learning of the productivity benefits of the PBS scheme.
Performance Based Standards (PBS) are design standards which allow truck and trailer combinations to be designed to carry larger than normal payloads to improve road transport efficiency and vehicle safety. The type of design depends on the route travelled, the type of cargo and the objectives of the transport operator. In most cases it means operators are able to drive truck and trailer combinations which are outside the standard legal dimensions.
Fruithaul owner, Mat Vallance, heard about the PBS scheme via a Victorian sub-contractor who had already ordered one of the Maxi-CUBE 26 pallet vans himself. “When he told me how the PBS scheme allowed him to tow longer-than-usual trailers, I asked Scott Thiesfield from Trailer Sales in Brisbane how I could go about trialing one myself,” said Mat.
Trailer Sales is Maxi-CUBE’s Queensland dealership. Fruithaul has stayed loyal to Trailer Sales and Area Sales Manager, Scott Thiesfield, who has been their sole trailer supplier for a number of years. After receiving the request from Mat, Scott managed the entire process, working with Mat to ascertain the correct specifications on the trailer for his requirements and coordinating the PBS application process with assistance from Maxi-CUBE’s engineers at the brand’s factory in Ballarat, Victoria.
According to Scott, the benefits of PBS trailers can no longer be ignored. “Fruithaul’s 26 pallet refrigerated trailer has two extra pallet spaces when compared with a standard 24 pallet trailer, which translates into greater profit per load for operators,” he said. “While Fruithaul has been the trail blazer in this instance, this is just the beginning of the take-up of PBS in the van sector. The bulk transport sector has been making use of PBS solutions for a number of years and the rest of the transport industry is just starting to sit up and take notice of the benefits as well.”
“This particular model, the 26 pallet single refrigerated van, has certainly begun to generate a lot of interest in recent months,” he said.
Mat agreed. “The real benefit we see in the 26 pallet trailer is that it bridges the gap between the cost of a single trailer and a B-Double,” he stated. “We get the productivity benefits at only a fraction extra cost, which is win/win for us.”
“The other benefit is that the 26 pallet trailer is approved for all general routes, so it has greater flexibility in terms of where it can access, in comparison to a B-Double.”
The approved payload of Mat’s PBS combination is 23 tonne. Mat requested that Scott include mass management in the specification of his trailer, so that he could accurately ensure that he always carried maximum payload, without risk of overloading. “Many of the products we carry are very light, so staying under 23 tonne, even with extra pallet spaces, is not too difficult,” said Mat. “But it doesn’t hurt to play it safe and the mass management system ensures we can always stay compliant, checking the weight of our load easily via weight gauges fitted to the truck and trailer.”
Mat Vallance took over Fruithaul’s business, after his father and business founder, Garrie, sadly passed away in March of this year. Despite it being a difficult time personally, Mat vowed to continue to strive to reach the same standards of excellence and innovation that Garrie had set for himself and the business. With this new trailer and with another one on the way, Mat feels that he is continuing his father’s legacy in the Caboolture-based business and creating something he would be proud of.