Simarco Reduces Its Carbon Footprint

Simarco, one of the UK’s leading freight companies, is optimising vehicle utilisation and reducing carbon emissions. Thanks in part, says Simarco Fleet Manager Craig Rowley, to the family-owned company’s policy of operating Volvo trucks no more than three years old and the ‘fantastic’ support the firm receives from Volvo dealer MC Truck & Bus at Witham, Essex.

The Simarco Group began trading 18 years ago in 1997 with the company’s Transport Division founded three years later in 2000. The firm, which is a shareholding member of Palletforce, started with one van and now operates a UK fleet of 66 trucks, 40 of which are Volvos.

Simarco’s Head Office is in Witham, Essex and the firm has operating centres in Burton-upon-Trent and Stoke-on-Trent. Simarco has offices also Liverpool, Manchester, Northampton and Stoke on Trent.

Given the company’s focus on customer service and the intensity of the transport operation, maximising vehicle utilisation is vital, says Craig Rowley. “Our Volvo FHs operate on full-load national trunks during the night and multi-drop pallet work during the day. The 12 FH artics on our national fleet operate 24/7 and each covers in the region of 250,000 Kms a year. Utilisation of the 8 new series FE rigids is split 50/50 with four on national deliveries and four on local operations. The FEs are each doing around 100,000 Kms a year, including deliveries to Scotland.”

“Dealer locations are of vital importance when choosing which make of truck to operate,” adds Craig: “Our Volvo fleet is maintained on a Volvo Repair and Maintenance contract by MC Truck & Bus at Witham. The staff there are fantastic. Their close proximity to the operating centre at Witham and the high standard of service they provide makes it like having our own workshop on site.”

Another benefit of dealing with MC Truck & Bus, reports Craig, is that, “Thanks to their Rental division, we have never dropped a load, as they have always been able to quickly source a replacement truck in the event of unscheduled downtime. What’s more, we have always had a good response from Volvo Action Service whenever we have needed breakdown assistance. Overall, thanks to the sturdy build quality of the trucks and the excellent back-up, we have no problems with the Volvo fleet.”

Driver comfort and safety are high on the agenda for Simarco says Craig and all the Volvos on the fleet have well-specified cabs and automated gearboxes. The latest FE rigids are equipped with the 8-litre D8K280 engine rated at 280 hp and I-Shift automated gearbox. Simarco also operate 13 Volvo tractor units, 12 FH and one FM. The company also runs two FL 4×2 rigids and four FM 6×2 rigid curtainsiders. The latter, which operate nationally and cover around 200,000 kms a year, are equipped with Globetrotter cabs, Volvo’s 11-litre engine rated at 330 hp and I-Shift gearboxes. The FH 6×2 tractors feature Globetrotter cabs, 13-litre D13K500 Euro-6 engines rated at 500 hp and I-Shift gearboxes. Bodywork on the FM rigids, including ‘teardrop’ aerodynamic bodies, was designed and built by Lawrence David. The curtainsider bodies fitted to the FE rigids was manufactured and fitted by Colliers of Maldon.

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