Prazdroj to Invest 250 Million in New Handling Trucks

17.9.2008 Uncategorized

New “HYSTER” trucks will speed up Pallet Handling and loading

Plzeňský Prazdroj closed a demanding tender for one of this year’s biggest contracts on the Czech handling equipment market. The winner, Phoenix-Zeppelin, will deliver to Plzeňský Prazdroj 130 HYSTER fork-lift trucks to handle beer and packaging material. Unique types with a bearing capacity of seven metric tons will shorten by half the time needed for loading finished beer.

The core part of the supply will be 130 handling trucks of various sizes and tonnages. Approximately 80 electric trucks with a carrying capacity of 3 metric tons and a lifting height of over 4 meters are equipped with a device capable of handling two full palettes. Prazdroj has been using electric-powered handling trucks with good experience for four years. Their advantages include lower fuel and maintenance costs. Lower noise levels and zero emissions contribute to good working environment and positively affect the living environment.

Rare in the beverage industry will be three dozens of LPG-powered trucks with a bearing capacity of 7 metric tons. This type of truck can carry up to four pallets loaded with beer (two and two in a row), thus filling the width of a cargo truck and saving both time and operating costs. It can load 36 pallets into an articulated truck (the so-called long truck) in almost half the time as a two-pallet forklift. Compared to similar machines of this tonnage, HYSTER is one meter shorter so the driver has more space to handle the truck. Simplified loading also increases safety in warehouses.

“The new method of handling four pallets and electric power in the “smaller” trucks are two basic building blocks of the new logistical concept in our brewery. The loading system is the same for all our breweries and commercial distribution centres,” says David Jelínek, manager of the Logistics Development Department, Plzeňský Prazdroj.

Most of the delivered trucks have been adjusted for beverage handling, for example by a specially lifted cab for a better view of the driver. Handling safety is increased by specialized equipment, such as overload control, including an integrated load scale, a safety belt or a weight-adjustable seat. Trucks are also equipped with an electronic data bus device ensuring easy registration of the number of hours worked by each driver, indicating the need of maintenance, and providing overview of repairs and spare part use.

The contract including a service and maintenance package will cost CZK 250 million for five years.

Additional information about the Plzeňský Prazdroj handling fleet:

  • The Plzeňský Prazdroj handling fleet has a total of 180 vehicles; the purchase of HYSTER trucks means their regular replacement after five years of operation.
  • The fleet handles 6.4 million pallet units of beer per year and about 5 million pallets of packaging, so overall it relocates around 12 million pallet units with a total weight of about 7 million metric tons, including packaging.
  • The fleet’s annual mileage is approximately 400,000 km, i.e. 10 times the length of Earth’s equator.
  • Similar trucks are usually called “lizards” in Czech plants, but it is not excluded that in the brewing industry the HYSTER trucks will get a new nickname owing to the playfulness of the Czech language.

Jiri Marecek
Mobile: +420 724 617 219