Alternative fuels and green vehicles have taken many forms in the past dozen or so years, but unsurprisingly, the form that’s been dominating much of the public conversation has been electric — even though we are still many years away from any meaningful widespread deployment.
Today’s business environment requires distributors to constantly pursue opportunities that improve the efficiency of their fleet operations. At Orion, Mich.-based Powers Distributing, this pursuit of efficiency pre-dates the economic roller coaster of the past decade and extends into other areas of the business.
With petroleum fuel prices at their lowest in recent history, the cost of being “green” has been driven higher than ever. Like any technology, green technology must pass the return-on-investment (ROI) test to justify its purchase. Altruistic or community relations have motivated some fleets to invest in the technology, but many fleets insist on a measurable ROI before investing.
Forklifts are reaching new heights of functionality. The demand for vehicles that are efficient, safe and have the flexibility to operate effectively in a host of environments is leading to the development of models with enhanced designs and features.
In spite of generally positive performance out on the road, diesel-electric hybrid drivetrains have had less than stellar success in the North American truck market. So much so that Eaton Corp., a manufacturer of hybrid components, has recently announced that it will discontinue offering hybrid drivetrains in North America.
After Colorado home brewer Jeff Lebesch returned from a trip across Europe on his “fat tire” mountain bike in 1989, he began brewing an amber beer called Fat Tire in the basement of his Fort Collins, Colo., home.
In the game of Jenga, players have to be nimble in order to keep the wooden tower from collapsing. In a beverage warehouse, forklift operators must possess this same quality for a more serious purpose — transporting product without causing damage. And just like Jenga, in the game of material handling, every move counts.