Logistics /

19 May 2024

Lower costs and heighten security with Tuffa

NE Transport Solutions run a fleet of over 50 HGVs ranging from 44-tonne Arctics to 7-tonne trucks and a mixture of flatbeds, curtain siders and box vehicles, with heavy lifting forklifts for loading. Around half the fleet consists of container curtain sides and runs general haulage while the other half pull Tesco’s trailers as their main haulage supplier.

After a lull in work caused by COVID, their workload rocketed as did the reliance on their 30-year old diesel tank which was dispensing up to 8000L of fuel per day. Zoltan, NE Transport Solutions Transport Manager, explained that the increase in work and fuel intensified the need for a modern and reliable fuel tank but also gave them the capital to invest in essential assets.

Zoltan described how necessary a replacement tank was. The 45,000L tank they had been using for 30 years was ‘very basic’ with fuel levels gauged by a dipstick which was accessed via a ladder to the top of a tank, and that only gave a vague indication. The lack of any fuel management system meant there wasn’t a digital record of fuel usage with drivers writing their mileage with a pen and paper to be typed up later – easy pickings for fuel theft. With the old tank approaching the end of its usable life and the lack of a gauge or fuel management creating unnecessary work for the crew, Zoltan entered the market for an upgraded tank and explains why he chose Tuffa:

“We shopped around and made some enquiries with tank manufacturers. Tuffa were always quick to respond, had excellent customer service and had slightly shorter lead times. The tank was a good price too, not the cheapest of all our quotes but it was worth paying a little more for better specs and additional equipment.”

After discussing his options with Tuffa’s Senior Sales Dee (a tank veteran with 20 years’ industry experience) Zoltan decided our 50,000L steel diesel dispensing tank was perfect for the freight company’s needs. This comes with a high-spec as standard and several optional extras were chosen to meet the site’s exact needs, including:

  • 53,400L safe working capacity
  • Integrally bunded including the tank’s base (i.e. not a common bottom tank)
  • 1m full end walk-in cabinet with roller shutter door
  • 10 micron water & particulate filter
  • K44 pulse meter
  • Control panel
  • C2020 contents gauge with bund alarm
  • Fuel management system (Piusi MC Box) with 60 user keys (optional extra)
  • 10m delivery hose with self-retracting hose reel (optional extra)
  • High flow pump (optional extra)

With new Tuffa tank collected and installed by NE Transport Solutions, we caught up with Zoltan to see how it was performing:

“I’m very happy, the new Tuffa tank is simple to use and a huge improvement on the old one. We’re currently in the process of going digital and our new fuel management system is paying dividends. We’re no longer using paperwork and it’s also reducing labour on tasks such as taking wet stock levels. We used to have to calculate annual fuel usage and average fuel consumptions which meant hours of calculations and reems of paperwork. Now it takes seconds for simple export and boom jobs done. Each driver and lorry have its own key or code so we can work out exactly how much fuel they are using. We’re suddenly using less fuel now – the new system is more secure.”

The fuel management system wasn’t the only thing saving time and effort. Zoltan explained that while most of their lorry units have the fuel tank on the left-hand side, the newer lorries have them on the right. The 10m hose reel accommodates the drivers’ refuelling with the diesel tank on any side. When there are 15 lorries waiting to refuel at the same time, not having to swing the lorries around makes a real difference. As does the high flow pump, an upgrade Zoltan was particularly happy about “couple of minutes, boom jobs done”.

The extra capacity and accurate contents gauge are also helping to improve fuel security. NE Transport use around 3,000L to 4,000L of fuel per day during weekdays and up to 8,000L on Saturday on Sunday.

While the 50,000L capacity would sustain the freight company for a fortnight, recent events have forced NE Transport Solutions to get weekly fuel drops as a security measure against diesel shortages. Zoltan gave the example of the recent fuel protesters who blocked Dartford Crossing which led to NE Transport Solutions running dry and having to use diesel cards. This was hugely costly for the company and frustrating for the drivers who were forced to use busy forecourts. With the extra capacity tank and weekly fills, Zoltan calculates they should have 1-2 weeks fuel at any time which mitigates the risk of running out of fuel altogether and eliminates the reliance on forecourts.

Zoltan also praised Tuffa’s aftersales care from Quality and Service Manager Cheryl. While the tank’s installation was simple (requiring only a solid base and 230V electrical connection) the first fuel drop made it apparent that the gauge was not displaying the correct volumes. Zoltan immediately reported the issue and within just two days an engineer had visited to recalibrate the gauge – speeds and service levels which impressed the Transport Manager.

The Tuffa tank is now fully operational and providing secure storage with rapid dispensing and accurate digital data. NE Transport Solutions is continuing to invest in improving their operations and Zoltan has already eyed up his next Tuffa purchase with a new high-capacity AdBlue tank that will give Zoltan plenty more reasons to say ‘boom, jobs done.’

Tuffa’s diesel tanks are available in capacities up to 30,000L in plastic and 100,000L in steel while AdBlue tanks are available in capacities up to 15,000L. Both systems are designed and manufactured to be low-maintenance and extremely durable with a high spec as standard. A range of optional extras including a fuel management system, hose reel, high flow pumps and a 12V/24V pump can customise the tank to meet site-specific requirements. Browse our tanks online and contact us for prices.

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