Some of the tires in ports and terminals are very difficult to change, as they might be mounted under big cranes, as is the case with RTG-tires and straddle carrier tires. These are tires that are very expensive to change, so you want to ensure that they can handle all the different season without problems and that they are durable and will last. Since the ports and terminals are around the clock operations, there is no time for breakdowns that can slow you down.
The different machines will need very different tires and they will have very different properties to fulfill their tasks to ensure a high output and productivity during the work shift. The most visible tires are the tires on all the trailers and then the terminal tractor tires. The terminal tractors are used to move around the trailers around the ports and terminals before they are picked up or after they have been dropped off. This require that the container trailers have to be moved around in small spaces with good turning response and since the terminal tractors are low to ensure that they can manage in cramped spaces.
The tires on the trailers are normal truck tires, but specially designed for trailers, as truck tires are different for the steering and driving axle of the trucks. They are built for the long haul ensuring that the containers and the goods they contain will get to its destination without problems related to the tires. The main tire problems tend to be caused by low tire pressure. For trailers that are picked up it can be difficult to know if the tires are already in good condition and the same goes if the tires are approved for winter conditions, in case the transport enters countries where commercial winter tires are mandatory.
It can be worth checking the technical tire manual to ensure that you know the recommended tire pressure for all the tires that you will find within the port and terminal and also making sure that the correct tire is selected for the application where they will be used. You will need to ensure that the tires can handle the load, within the range where they can operate. All this information and more can be found in the manual.
Terminal tractors are the main machines that are using tires in the terminals for moving either goods or containers around the port area. You also have RTG-tireson the RTG cranes and the straddle carrier. They are having similar work environment, where they have very high loads, need for good steering response and easy of wheel turning under heavy loads, which is helped by its tread pattern. Tracks are also used, but the wheeled equipment has more flexibility to move things around and sorting and finding containers.
The terminal tractors tend to operate in small areas, where
they have to maneuver the containers with limited space and narrow margins. They
have to handle massive load capacity and they often have a low profile so that
you can manage better in vary tight spaces with limited vehicle height. To
handle the heavy loads the terminal tractor tires will have a
sturdy multi-layer structure. The terminal tractor will mainly move around the
containers that are already on the trailer, before it is picked up or after it
was dropped off. This allows for speedy reallocation of the containers around
the port area.
For the straddle carriers you will need to have sturdy tires
to make sure to avoid that the containers or the equipment start swinging,
which will slow down the work and can potentially cause accidents. Durability
is key, as it is not easy to change these tires, so wear resistance is of utter
importance. You can select slick or grooved, where the slick gives you better
driving comfort. The tires need to also have excellent grip on wet or icy
surfaces, so that they can operate even during winter conditions.
To achieve the high productivity needed and to ensure that
delays are avoided, which is needed due to the high volume of containers every
day, the tires will need to have special tread compound for terminal use, with
very low heat build up and low tyre wear, as tire problems would take time to
fix, so you will need long trouble free service life and low wear, so that they
can operate for a long time without unscheduled downtime. So when selecting
tires for terminal equipment, make sure to base the decision based on the
durability and long operating hours for higher productivity year in and year
When dealing with material handling and containers at harbors and container terminals, you will need different wheeled equipment to handle the containers in intermodal freight transport. Here the containers will arrive or depart by container ships and the containers will be unloaded or loaded at the terminals. From the ships the containers can be loaded onto train carts or then to truck trailers.
You will have RTG cranes that can handle the containers and also lift the containers into the trailers. You will need high load bearing and precise handling of RTG tires, so that you can handle the weight of the containers and also be able to easily ground and stack containers. The RTG cranes are huge, so you can imagine that changing tires is a task that one doesn’t want to undertake too often. This put a lot of pressure on selecting a tire that has very low tire wear. These wheels also turn very easily reducing wear while the wheels are turned at no or low speed. High quality RTG tires will be needed to ensure high operating hours and low wear.
You will also have a straddle carrier where you might want
to use slick tires to ensure the machines and the containers from swinging. You
will need very sturdy tires that can manage the high loads bearing capacity.
You will need top class wear resistance and great grip even in damp or winter
conditions. Driving properties are also
key when you drive around the container terminal stacking containers.
You then also have a terminal tractor that can move around
the semi-trailers around the yard while waiting for the trucks to pick up the
containers. These terminal tractor tires will need to
be able to move around heavy weigh containers and will need to have exceptional
load bearing capacity. Maneuverability and precise driving response even in
small and narrow spaces are key features that these tires need to have.
When dealing with containers, some of them are on a tight
delivery schedule, so that you will need to make sure that your tire selection
doesn’t slow down your operations due to tire failures or unscheduled downtime.
Once the containers are placed on the semi-trailer trucks, they still have a
long way to go before they reach their final destination; so don’t delay them
at the terminal.
Your cargo around the world is also heavily dependent on selecting proper tires. Most cargo nowadays is transported by sea with huge container ships arriving to massive ports that can handle large volumes. Everything is nowadays handles by big hubs, where the containers are unloaded and put on trucks for further delivery on land. There they will often be taken to a terminal, where the containers are then opened and the products can then be distributed in smaller shipments to their final destinations. The whole distribution chain is dependent on timely deliveries without delays.
with tires are involved in most of the transportation process, except the time
on sea. You will have trucks delivering the containers to the ports and these
will need to have good quality truck tires. At the ports you will have your
terminal tractors and RTG-cranes using RTG-tiresand terminal
Once at the final destination harbor, when the containers are transported on
land, you then need long haul tires for the long distance
transport. For these long distance transports low heat build-up is important
provide you with a low wear tire. Low rolling resistance gives you less heat
build-up and better fuel efficiency, so that you can deliver products more
degree of downtime also comes with better quality haul
that are built to last and sustain long distance driving. Unscheduled downtime
can be very costly, especially if you suffer substantial delays due to it. The
importance to find issues that can cause problems in the long run, is often
crucial to the efficiency of your operation. Try to get the drivers to report
any problem even small ones and make sure to check the tire pressure on a regular
basis, to avoid driving with too low tire pressure, which is the main reason
for tire failures.
rolling resistance provides the low fuel consumption, the lower wear translated
to less frequent replacements of tires, which are both adding to the economic
reasons of choosing high quality tires. Retreading of tires is another
important economic factor of choosing a high quality tire. Retreading can only
be done on high quality tires and if the carcass is in good condition.
Retreading can be done 1-2 times before the carcass has to be discarded.
Retreaded tires can add substantially savings to your tire budget.
If you are working with a maritime container port, you tend to have the highest type of costs involved. The equipment and the size of these tend to be very big and the costs of running them are very high, which is then balanced with the high utilization rate of them. This is when everything is running smoothly. During normal operations, a ship will arrive; the containers are taken off and then redistributed to the correct trucks or alternative transportation for further transports within the continent.
Any equipment downtime, caused by equipment
failures can be very expensive, as it delays in many cases shipments and lowers
the utilization rate for everything from the ships to the trucks
and the equipment in the terminal. This is why maintenance is a key part of
ensuring that the downtime is limited and hopefully can be almost avoided by
servicing and changing parts in time. Bad maintenance can also be a safety
concern, as you are dealing with very heavy equipment, carrying very heavy
You do not want to have e.g. the tires on your
RTG-crane to go flat, due to bad maintenance of improper tire selection. The
cost implications due to an RTG-tires
failure can be astronomical in comparison of what the tire or the proper
maintenance of it will cost. There are not that many equipment with vehicle
within the terminals that have such critical impact as the RTG-cranes and the
terminal trucks, however you will have more than one terminal truck, so the
impact of terminal
truck tires failure is less than for the cranes, which are
needed to load the containers on the trucks.
Delays can also cause some perishable goods to be
destroyed if they are not able to get off the ships and delivered on time, or
cause delays for other industries waiting for parts for their just-in-time
production line. Ensuring very limited downtime is the key to a profitable and
smooth well running operation. Container ports are competing against each
others based on costs, time, speed and infrastructure. Fixing some of the easy
problems tend to have the biggest impacts. Maintenance and safety should always
be key in operations where accidents can happen and when they do, the
consequences can be big and costly for everyone involved.
Goods are nowadays shipped all over the world. Products
might be produced in China and they still end up in the shelves in stores close
The process is not so difficult due to the global trade has
streamlined it so that it is nowadays quite quick process.
From the factory in China the product is produced and loaded
into a container for shipment. The container is then transported via a truck to
the harbor terminal for being loaded onto a container ship destined to your
part of the world.
The container ship arrives to the port and the containers
are taken off. Once they have been taken off the ship they are transported
around the terminal or stacked. An RTG will locate the container from the stack
The trucks are long haul trucks that can drive across the continent to a logistic warehouse for potential further distribution. Once the truck that will drive in your direction has located container it will load the container.
To make sure that they products arrive all the way to the
end destination close to you, there needs to be some industrial tires that will
be durable enough to make it all the way.
have to sustain a very high load while moving back and forth to deliver the
right container to the truck. With unique tread pattern you can easier move the
wheel despite standing still, you will need this to reduce the forces the
actuator will have to absorb.
The terminal tractors will need similar functions to easily
turn and move around the containers, thus the terminal
tractor tires need the easy ability to turn even small areas and be very
precise. They need to be able to also carry massive loads.