Chiltern Cold Storage expands forklift fleet amid new contract wins

Chiltern Cold Storage expands forklift fleet amid new contract wins
Chiltern Cold Storage expands forklift fleet amid new contract wins

Leading temperature-controlled logistics specialists Chiltern Cold Storage has recently ordered 12 new specialist forklift trucks from their long-time partner, UniCarriers.

Specialising in the manufacture of industrial trucks, UniCarriers has supplied trucks for Chiltern Cold Storage for over 20 years during which time they have supplied circa 80+ trucks to the company, as well as provide valuable consultation for major projects and truck acquisitions.

In conjunction with supplying high-quality, innovative warehouse equipment as well as IC/electric counterbalance forklifts UniCarriers also offer solutions in safety improvements, identifying cost efficiencies, and optimising customer operations.

The order was made following a number of high-profile contract wins for Chiltern – who has undergone major expansion in recent months – and acts as yet another significant investment into the business’ operations as it builds for growth.

The 12 new trucks, which comprise of three Double Deep Reach trucks, five Rear-Entry Pallet trucks and four 48V electric 3-wheel counterbalance trucks, will be split across Chiltern’s two sites in Peterborough and Bourne. Each truck is fitted with a state-of-the-art Tensor XGEL batteries which negates the use of expensive battery changeover systems and spare batteries as well as freeing up labour time.

Furthermore, with safety ‘top of mind’ for both businesses, UniCarriers engaged with Chiltern’s Health and Safety team to minimise out of contract costs, which predominantly includes damage costs caused by operators that affects the bottom line of the business.

With 1,200 pallets delivered daily by the cold store specialists, the demands placed on the trucks are exceptionally high, especially when factoring in the temperature which has a significant baring on truck performance and longevity of battery life.

Speaking on the long-standing relationship between the two businesses John Davidson, Managing Director at Chiltern Cold Storage commented: “The new forklift trucks are a great addition to our existing fleet and will help future proof the business during a time of strategic growth.

“In such harsh environments and with volumes increasing for ever-expanding Chiltern, truck reliability and optimal uptime is vital for operations to continue.

“When operating in low temperatures of between -22 to -24 degrees Celsius, the challenges faced when operating the trucks in a cold store environment is considerable. It is for this reason UniCarriers is so vital to our operation and why in many ways the partnership goes so much deeper than a simple customer-supplier relationship.

Along with the quality and bespoke aspect of the new trucks, the other important facet of the partnership is ensuring that truck uptime is maximised as much as possible – something we feel is the real difference we find with UniCarriers. Their first-time fix rate is above 95 per cent, which is nothing short of exceptional as it ensures that our operations can continue with minimal delay.

“The trucks are also manufactured entirely for the operator. From the bespoke safety features which include a S3 stability system to camera technology to improve visibility, the trucks are a perfect fit for our operation.

John continued: “UniCarriers are just a very easy company to work with. They have a full understanding of who we are, our growth plans, and what we need as a business. Ultimately, they support our long-term challenges through constant engagement and have become an integral cog in our business.”

Mark Wakeman, National Sales Manager for UniCarriers UK also said: “We are delighted to once again have the opportunity to support Chiltern as they continue to grow.

“The relationship between both businesses has grown from strength to strength, and the key to that has been to add that personal touch – to listen to their requirements and tailor the solution directly to their operation. We strive to support them every way we can on a daily basis by assisting them with their short-term and long-term challenges, which requires us to understand their business in-depth.”

UniCarriers recently won the Materials Handling Equipment Provider of the Year Award at the TCS&D Awards 2022 following their achievements in delivering high-quality, state-of-the-art equipment and consultancy to the Cold Chain sector.