Lerwick, Scotland: Shetland Transport was sufficiently impressed with its first two Gray & Adams insulated and refrigerated curtainside semi-trailers that it is running another three, and has four more on order.
The latest additions to the 100 trailer fleet are on regular runs between company headquarters in Lerwick, and depots in Aberdeen and at Coatbridge, near Glasgow.
The 13.6m Gray & Adams trailers were built in Newtownabbey, Northern Ireland. They have low-emission Thermo King SLX-e 400 fridges with heavy-duty insulated curtains to maintain temperature and provide side access loading that Shetland Transport managing director Hamish Balfour values.
“Prior to taking delivery of our first two Gray & Adams insulated and refrigerated curtainsiders in 2014, it had been some 15 years since we’d last operated this type of product,” he says. “But those early trailers were not by Gray & Adams and gave us a few headaches, mainly because they weren’t robust enough to withstand the rigours of North Sea ferry crossings.
“However, the Gray& Adams versions, which we purchased along with another batch of our usual, ferry spec box trailers, have proved very successful.”
Also available as truck bodies, Gray & Adams curtainsiders are best-suited to single-temperature distribution operations. Key to the product’s appeal for operators like Shetland Transport, is the flexibility and speed of loading and unloading compared to a conventional box.
“Most of our outbound loads are of salmon, and other fish, but we also carry a certain amount of what I call ‘ugly’ freight, by which I mean products which are particularly long or big and bulky,” Balfour says. “Its easy access side-loading capability makes the curtainsider particularly well suited to this type of work.”
“These trailers are built to typically high Gray & Adams standards, so the first two have performed flawlessly in terms of their strength and component reliability, while we’ve had no issues with regards to temperature control either.”