Managing a fleet carrying windows of all shapes and sizes over a large area presents a complex transport task with a number of challenges. PowerTorque talks to an operator who has got a handle on that task.
Every transport task has its own particular associated problems. Anything involving glass adds an extra dimension to those problems. Mistakes will often lead to broken glass, and that is the end of the story. A great deal of care and expertise is involved in loading and securing freight like windows.
Not only do the windows have to be secure, they also have to be protected from any movement and excessive vibration, both of which can lead to disaster, especially on our notorious roads. Mid Coast Windows has had to learn to deal with the issues around transporting its product.
The issue is not just getting the product to the customer undamaged and intact. For Mid Coast Windows, it is also important to develop an efficient system for the distribution of the product across a large area of the East Coast
“We make windows, and they are all made in Port Macquarie, and they are transported all over Northern New South Wales and up into the Gold Coast and Brisbane,” says Gary Watson, the owner and operator of Mid Coast Windows. “We also go south from here through Newcastle, Sydney and as far as Wollongong.”
The trucks are delivering aluminium Vantage windows across this wide area to building companies which are fitting the windows as they build new houses. The windows are delivered direct to job sites at the right time, and in the right condition, for them to be fitted as and when needed.
“All of the windows are loaded onto A-frames and then strapped down,” says Gary. “Then those A-frames are lifted onto the back of the trucks in preparation for delivery.”
The system of delivery involves larger trucks heading out with full loads which are then dropped off at smaller facilities, in areas up and down the coast, where the smaller trucks load windows for individual customers in order to deliver to specific sites.
In this kind of business the truck fleet are just one aspect of the operation, one of the tools of the trade. Gary characterises this saying the trucks are ‘a screwdriver’, just one of the tools need to make the whole process work. Of course, it’s a screwdriver you have got to have, the product has to get to the customer, where it is needed.