Savannah, GA,
07
June
2012
|
06:05 PM
America/New_York

Frito-Lay North America

Summary


From every perspective, says Kevin Podmore, who oversees the long-haul fleet at Frito-Lay North America, Great Dane builds perfect trailers for our operation. "Our goal is two-fold, to realize 20 or more years of reliable service from our trailers and to do so with minimal maintenance," he states. "Working with Great Dane, we learn what's available to us to achieve those objectives and to specify the best trailers."

From every perspective, says Kevin Podmore, who oversees the long-haul fleet at Frito-Lay North America, Great Dane builds perfect trailers for our operation. "Our goal is two-fold, to realize 20 or more years of reliable service from our trailers and to do so with minimal maintenance," he states. "Working with Great Dane, we learn what's available to us to achieve those objectives and to specify the best trailers."

Frito-Lay North America is a wholly owned subsidiary of PepsiCo, Inc., which is headquartered in Purchase, NY, and includes Pepsi-Cola beverages, Gatorade sports drinks, Tropicana juices and Quaker foods. The $13 billion convenient foods business unit's brands account for 59 percent of the U.S. snack chip industry.

Headquartered in Plano, Texas, the Frito-Lay fleet includes about 600 Great Danes. The trailers, which operate from 26 traffic centers across the U.S., haul loads from plants to company distribution centers and make store deliveries to grocery chains and wholesale clubs. Also part of the fleet's portfolio is handling hauls for PepsiCo sister companies as part of a company-wide effort to find optimal transportation and routing solutions.

"We've been a Great Dane customer since 1998," Podmore says, "and some of our original trailers are actually still in service. In many ways they still look new. That's how well the Great Danes hold up in our operation."

Frito-Lay's newest Great Dane trailers include The Composite and Classic dry freight vans. In 2010, the company purchased about 60 The Composite plate wall vans. For 2011, Frito-Lay has ordered 70 more Great Danes, including Composite models, and Classic dry freight vans with Interlift liftgates.

"The Composite is a great asset for us," Podmore states. "With a full 101-inch interior width they help handle high cube loads, and the.30-inch thick composite wall panels provide more puncture-resistance, which helps reduce damage to the trailers during loading and unloading operations. Also, with the composite walls and composite doors we specify, we can fight the effects of corrosion, especially in areas of U.S. where that is a big concern."

All of Frito-Lay's new trailers purchased since 2009 have also been treated with CorroGuard, Great Dane's exclusive spray-inplace thermoplastic elastomeric coating that completely covers sub-frames and landing gear, providing unmatched impact protection from road abrasion to combat corrosion.

"The Composite is an all around winner in our fleet," Podmore says. "Our technicians say it's the best trailer they've seen in 20 years and from our drivers' perspective there aren't any issues. They tell us that this is a great trailer and they are very confident when they load them and head down the road."

Frito-Lay, according to Podmore, also looks to its trailer fleet to further the company's sustainability initiatives. For example, since 2010 all new Great Danes in its fleet have been equipped with Alcoa aluminum wheels and SmartWay approved low rolling resistance tires to help reduce fuel use. The lighter weight wheels also help boost payload capacity.

Fuel efficiency is also being addressed on Frito-Lay's Great Danes by adding Nose Cone air deflectors on trailer front walls and Freight Wing belly fairings on every new trailer since 2009. Other fuel savings specs include the Eco-flap from Andersen Flaps, which cut drag by allowing air to flow through them, and according to the fleet's drivers also reduce road spray.

Extending the life cycle of its Great Dane trailers and helping achieve its goal of minimal unscheduled downtime are Havco composite 1.19-inch laminated hardwood floors. "That floor will serve us well in the long run," Podmore says, "and they save weight as well."

Podmore also points out other long life components on Frito-Lay's trailers, including Hendrickson INTRAAX axles and suspensions, TSE brake chambers—something the company's technicians recommended inspecification review meetings. One additional item, he notes, is EZ Claw, a tandem slider hose and cable management system that keep air lines tethered and shaped properly, eliminating spring and hose replacements.

Fighting Corrosion
Taking corrosion resistance and durability a step further, CorroGuard, Great Dane's exclusive spray-in-place thermoplastic elastomeric coating applied to suspensions and support gear, is now providing superior long-term protection from road abrasion and corrosion on dry vans and refrigerated trailer models. Part of a complete package of comprehensive corrosion prevention solutions, CorroGuard is extremely durable and highly resistant to de-icing chemicals, road debris, climate fluctuations, and ice and snow. Air and water tight, it will not peel, crack, warp, flake or split under even the harshest of conditions, and it remains pliable over time and withstands prolonged UV exposure. CorroGuard also does not contain VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) or solvents so it is not carcinogenic, ozonedepleting or harmful if inhaled.