WHERE SIZE MATTERS Tackling the gruelling and harsh Polar Circle in Sweden.
SAFETY RESEARCH 2.0 How the worldâ€™s best active safety systems are being developed.
MAKING AN IMPACT The year Volvo Trucks paved the way in crash-testing vehicles.
A MAGAZINE FROM VOLVO MALAYSIA SDN BHD ISSUE # 2 / 2014
Fuelled By Family How Mega Heavy Transport Sdn. Bhd. became one of the most prominent family-run haulage operators in the country
Market Development Grant (MDG) Double TAX Deduction
The 2 nd Malaysia International Intralogistics & Supply Chain Solutions Exhibition & Conference
M I N E S I N T E R N AT I O N A L E X H I B I T I O N C E N T R E , S E L A N G O R , M A L AY S I A
Official Shipping Media
Tel : +603-5636 1788
Asean Logistics & Transport Show
CONTENT Uptime #2/2014
SIZE MATTERS At the Polar Circle in northern Sweden, a 90-tonne vehicle combination is driving in the most gruelling conditions.
All In The Family
Moving With The Times
Me & My Volvo
Mega Heavy Transport Sdn. Bhd. is one of the most prominent family-run haulage operators in the country, find out the secret to their success.
How a start in the shipping business made Armada International (M) Sdn. Bhd., one of the leading haulage operators in Malaysia.
Rajandren A/L Raman from Fueller Logistics Sdn. Bhd. shares with us his two decades worth of truck driving experience.
4 MD MESSAGE 5 START 24 INSIDE VOLVO 30 HOW IT WORKS 32 THE BUSINESS 38 THE YEAR UPTIME #2/2014
AT THE HALFWAY POINT
Time flies and in a blink of an eye, it is already the second half of 2014 and we are proud to share with you the 2nd issue of Uptime, a magazine packed with information all about Volvo Trucks. 2013 was a challenging year for parts of the world economy, including for some of the countries in this region. On a global level, the outlook for 2014 is positive and for Malaysia, the first quarter showed a strong GDP growth that exceeded 6%. The government has announced numerous projects, one of them being Malaysia’s biggest solar power plant construction in the northern corridor. There are various other indications and drivers of growth in the economy, which in turn supports the positive outlook for businesses and investments, both domestic and international. At the same time, some of our raw material products suffer from slower recent growth, so there is, as always, a need to tread carefully and to be well on top of e.g. total costs of ownership in order to secure future results. In line with growth, certain subsidies have been abolished and funds channelled to growth projects. We have seen some rising prices and there is a challenge to manage the impending arrival of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) next year. What would this mean for all of us? Announced at a flat 6% during the recent 2014 Budget announcement by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, the GST will impose some changes in how we operate our businesses. However, in keeping a positive mind set, the GST, despite being approached cautiously, does have redeeming qualities by being more transparent and business friendly, as it simplifies tax returns, which should ultimately help the overall economy in the long run. Faced with an ever-changing business landscape,
Volvo Trucks Malaysia has also embarked on several After Market initiatives, including the Classic Parts campaign alongside the Genuine Filter and Oil Kit promotion in order to serve our customers’ needs better. And in the footsteps of the very successful introduction in Europe nearly two years ago, the Asia launch of the completely renewed Volvo Trucks Heavy Duty Range was held in Seoul, Korea, in May. We had the pleasure of bringing 100 of our customers, in order to showcase the next generation of vehicles and products for our brand. We shall see these exciting products on our roads and in showrooms very soon. In April, we also successfully launched the annual Fuelwatch Challenge 2014, which culminated in the semifinals and finals on 6 & 7 June respectively with this year’s winner coming from Logistic Petikemas. So far, 2014 has been a busy period for all of us at Volvo Trucks Malaysia and one of our key focus areas is the continued upgrading and expansion of our network allowing us to remain your Best Business Partner. I urge all of you to keep visiting our website at volvotrucks.com.my or follow us www.fb.com/ VolvoTrucksMalaysia for further updates and exciting announcements. Until next time, keep on trucking!
Mats Nilsson Managing Director, Volvo Trucks Malaysia
UPDATE Uptime is published by Volvo Malaysia Sdn Bhd, No 6, Jalan Bicu 15/6 Seksyen 15, 40200 Shah Alam Selangor Darul Ehsan. Volvo Malaysia is a wholly-owned subsidiary of AB Volvo, Sweden since 1969.
UPTIME #2/2014 #9/2013
News & updates from the Volvo world
Fuelwatch 2014 Champion Crowned En. Ahmad Bin Othman from Logistik Petikemas Sdn Bhd claims coveted title
After two months of scouring the roads and highways for Malaysia’s most fuel efficient driver, Volvo Trucks Malaysia has finally announced the Champion for this year’s Fuelwatch Challenge, its annual nationwide fuel-saving competition! Held in an evening of sheer fun and entertainment, the Gala Dinner was attended by over 100 guests at the Holiday Inn, Glenmarie on 7 June to celebrate the crowning occasion where we were proud to present the Championship title to 49 year-old trucker, En Ahmad Bin Othman from Logistik Petikemas Sdn Bhd in Prai. Clocking the lowest fuel consumption in a 40-kilometre drive challenge in the final stage of the Fuelwatch Challenge, En Ahmad Bin Othman who hails from the Perak town of Ipoh achieved a strong result of 2.52 kilometres using only 1
litre of fuel driving a Volvo truck with a 40-footer container carrying 20 tonnes of load. As the national champion and newest Fuelwatch ambassador, En Ahmad Bin Othman is set to represent Malaysia at the Fuelwatch APAC and World Finals 2014, to be held in Volvo’s home country in Gothenburg, Sweden later this September. Volvo Trucks Malaysia also had the privilege of having En. A. Halim Husain, Head – Operations Group, Suruhanjaya Pengangkutan Awam Darat (SPAD) graced the event. Addressing the driver and the media, the Guest-of-Honour expressed his wish to see more companies in the private sector follow the footsteps of Volvo Trucks Malaysia and spearhead initiatives such as Fuelwatch to help shape a stronger trucking community.
The 1st runner up was En Zaril from Linfox (M) Sdn Bhd followed by En Azrul Haiza, Vertex Mission as 2nd runner up.
News & updates from the Volvo world
Asian Premiere For New Volvo Truck Range The Volvo FM and the Volvo FMX roll out in style in Seoul Volvo Trucks’ much-heralded new range was launched recently in Seoul, South Korea. The event held on 13th May saw the unveiling of the Volvo FM, Volvo FMX as well as the flagship Volvo FH, voted ‘International Truck of the Year 2014’ in Europe. “Volvo has invested more than US$3 billion and 14 million engineering hours in product development alone,” explained Mr Joachim Rosenberg, Executive Vice President of the Volvo Group at a press event held at Walkerhill nearby Seoul. “Together with comprehensive service offerings, the new Volvo truck range will deliver outstanding transport solutions to our customers.” Over 1,500 VIP customers from all over Asia arrived in Seoul to view the new models for themselves. The most modern and innovative Volvo line-up ever, the heavy-duty trucks include innovation
and technology that makes the driver’s job easier and more efficient, with an outstanding ability to help customers in all segments to improve productivity and profitability. The new range also introduces unique features such as the ground-breaking Volvo Dynamic Steering (VDS), which delivers exceptional handling, intelligent I-Shift gearbox technology as well as Volvo’s unique Dynafleet system. “With new hi-tech
capabilities and a wide range of benefits, the trucks are equipped to serve Volvo customers in all segments in Asia,” commented Mr. Christophe Martin, President of Volvo Trucks in Asia. Mr. Martin also stressed Volvo Trucks’ commitment to be the number one preferred truck brand in Asia. “Our objective is to be the best in terms of brand image, and most importantly, in terms of customer satisfaction.”
Promoting Safety Volvo Trucks Singapore embarks on campaign to make roads safer for children. With the support of the Singapore Police Force and the Singapore Road Safety Council, Volvo Trucks Singapore produced an educational video for heavy duty truck drivers to advocate safe driving habits. In the video, Shawn Lim, Volvo Trucks Singapore’s Fuelwatch Competition 2013 winner imparts his knowledge on ways to ensure safety of drivers and other road users through demonstration of pre-drive checks, blind spots and safe following distance amongst other essential tips. The DVDs of the safety video
will be distributed to trade associations, safety driving school and logistics and construction companies. Additionally, Volvo Trucks Singapore is also bringing the ‘Road Safety at Eye Level’ programme to primary schools. The programme will equip children with safety tips and traffic rules along with hands-on knowledge of the blind spots of a heavy-duty truck. More than 700 primary school children in four school zones around Singapore will go through the customised 40-minute hands-on workshop.
Developing Better Drivers The new Volvo Driver Development Program launched by Volvo Trucks Malaysia is targeted at improving the skills of Malaysian truck drivers. Conducted by Volvo certified driver trainers, participants who sign up for the program will not only learn how to operate their Volvo trucks efficiently but also gain essential and useful information regarding their trucks’ features and their applications. Available in one or two-day course modules, the Volvo Driver Development program is also particularly useful for drivers as well as fleet operators who have their own trainers or master drivers to conduct internal training. Additionally, driver trainers, executives and managers are also encouraged to attend this program to gain a deeper understanding of the product, features and correct use of their respective Volvo trucks.
Contact your nearest Volvo Trucks dealer or log on to www.volvotrucks.com.my to find out more.
Volvo Trucks Malaysia launches new Driver Development Program
Welcome Gilles Laroche Volvo Malaysia appoints new Vice President of Aftermarket Volvo Malaysia would like to extend a warm welcome to Mr. Gilles Laroche who has just joined as Vice President of Aftermarket. Gilles who boasts a career that spans over 30 years in research and development as well as after sales in Europe is geared up for the challenge of spearheading Volvo Malaysia’s Aftermarket initiatives in the coming year and beyond. Gilles, who is a graduate engineer from the Ecole nationale supérieure des mines d’Alès in France, started his career in 1980 working in the research and development market with Renault before moving on to handle various different roles with the company. In 2007 Gilles took on the role of Renault Trucks France, VP Aftermarket, which focused on network management, service offers and customer satisfaction.
DRIVER REPORT Text Olivia Krantz Photo Nicke Johansson
SIZE MATTERS At the Polar Circle in northern Sweden, a 90 tonne vehicle combination is driving in theÂ most gruelling conditions.
UP TIME #2/2014
UP TIME #2/2014
oger Henriksson is simply longing for the light. For four months of the year, he spends his working days in the shadows between dusk and dawn. As a driver in Överkalix, a few kilometres south of the northern Polar Circle, darkness, snowy roads and temperatures as low as minus 40 degrees Celsius are the norm. The reward for this harsh winter arrives in June. “It’s almost impossible to describe what it’s like here in the summer when it’s light 24 hours a day and the midnight sun is shining. Everything is much easier when your alarm rings at 1.50 am in June and the sun is shining compared with the same thing when it’s pitch black and minus 35 degrees Celsius!” says Roger Henriksson.
Even if the climate is harsh and shiftwork
starting at 3 am every other week really takes its toll, he would not wish to change his job as a driver in the north. “I’m the person I am because I have always lived here. I’m nearly 50 and I’ve been abroad just once in my life. It was OK, two days before I came home I became homesick! I’m the kind of person who couldn’t live in a large city.” Every time he works, Roger drives between his home town of Överkalix and the sawmill in Munksund, twice there and back with a cargo of timber. The truck he drives is 30 metres long and
when it is fully laden it weighs 90 tonnes! “It goes without saying that it was a bit scary to begin with when I looked in the rearview mirror and saw that the truck appeared to be endless! However, I quickly got used to it and I have to admit that I feel I’ve got ‘the power’, says Roger with a smile. For the past year, he has been driving this
vehicle combination, which is part of the ETT – En Trave Till (One Pile More) – research project. Driving with a 50% larger load increases efficiency and cuts carbon emissions by 20% compared with a traditional timber vehicle combination. As the weight is distributed over more axles, the vehicle combination also causes less wear and tear to the road surface. He has been given a dispensation to drive this truck, which weighs 30 tonnes more than Swedish legislation permits, on public roads. Volvo Trucks is one of a number of partners participating in this research project and it is hoped that the project will help to bring about a change in the legislation, so that the total maximum permitted weight for heavy-duty transport will be increased from 60 to 74 tonnes. The long term goal is also to get 90 tonne trucks approved. Roger sits in his cab and swears. The belowzero temperatures that usually hold Överkalix in a stranglehold have slowly risen to near zero, which will result in black ice and slush.
Driver Roger Henriksson is checking the load of timber before driving off. This is a special day. It is the first time he will drive the new Volvo FH16 - specially designed for heavy-duty tasks. 10
UP TIME #2/2014
UP TIME #2/2014
“It goes without saying that it was bit scary to begin with when I looked in the rearview mirror and saw that the truck appeared to be endless!” ROGER HENRIKSSON, TRUCK DR IVER
UP TIME #2/2014
“It’s only when it starts melting and the slush appears that it’s like this, not otherwise. Not being able to get away immediately is…,” he stops speaking and grimaces. After being helped by a colleague to get his truck moving, Roger is slightly late leaving the parking lot. Today is a special day. This is the first time Roger is driving Volvo Trucks’ new Volvo FH16, specially constructed for heavy-duty tasks. “It’s always fun to drive a new truck. I already feel a big difference now when driving the
new FH. This one has more power, it is much stronger and maintains better speed on hills. It has a different suspension than the old model and it feels much more comfortable on the road. I feel extremely confident in this truck,” says Roger. The road between Överkalix and Piteå is pretty straight with some longer runs and occasional curves. Thanks to the independent front suspension, IFS, Roger already notices that the truck is easier on the road.
“It runs like a dream, like clockwork. It is much more stable compared to the old one. It is even more stable on bends and roundabouts and can withstand more, you only need to turn. This is of course very positive for me as a driver with a vehicle that behaves in a more stable manner on the road.” Reliability and the fact that the truck can handle the job despite tough conditions are a must in northern Sweden. “Driving in the winter up here can be exciting, a snow storm one minute, ice the next.
UP TIME #2/2014
“The braking system is so good on this truck that the braking distance isn’t longer than that of a standard 60-tonne truck.” ROGER HENRIKSSON, TRUCK DRIVER
UP TIME #2/2014
For inexperienced drivers with poor tyres, it’s no fun. I often see foreign trucks that have got stuck on hills. Just last week, a foreign vehicle combination drove into the ditch, trailer and all,” he says. He has found himself in the ditch on a couple of occasions during his 24 years as a timber truck driver. The last one was more than ten years ago. Roger points to the shoulder he injured in the accident and say it still aches a little. “In icy conditions you need to be able to judge when to stop and when to continue driving,” explains Roger. The first time he drove the ETT truck, he was
surprised by how smooth and flexible it was, despite its length. As the trailer comprises a dolly, link and trailer, it is difficult to reverse, but otherwise Roger does not think that the extra tonnes make that much difference while driving. “The braking system is so good on this truck that the braking distance isn’t longer than that of a standard 60-tonne truck,” he says. He winds down the window and spits out his moist snuff (Swedish ‘snus’). Behind the tops of the pine trees, the March sunshine flashes past. Roger is wearing sunglasses over his normal glasses to protect his eyes from the light which is reinforced by reflections from the snow. “Between Överkalix and Piteå, there’s a real difference in climate, road conditions and weather conditions. It can be great in Överkalix but slippery between Luleå and Piteå,” says Roger. Even though it takes just two hours to travel between Överkalix and Piteå, the temperature in the winter can vary from minus 30 degrees Celsius inland to just a few degrees below zero at the coast. This creates demands not only on the driver but also on the truck, which has to be able to deal with these large temperature variations.
At the sawmill in Munksund, the debarked logs travel on conveyor belts between the piles of timber. Unloading takes no time at all and, just over 30 minutes later, Roger is once again on his way to Överkalix. Before the day comes to an end, he will have completed another transport assignment. It will then be time to return to his home and family. Roger has four children and today he is going to collect his youngest son from nursery school. “I like covering the same route. My friends think I’m a bit mad, they wonder if I won’t go crazy! I tell them that you can’t sit and think about driving the same route. The advantage is that I get home to my family in time and can sleep in my own bed every night.” ■
FACT FILE THE PROJECT
En Trave Till – ETT – is Swedish and stands for One Pile More. Adding one more pile of timber increases efficiency and makes transport more environmentally sound at the same time. The research project started in 2007 and will continue until 2016. The objective is to influence Swedish legislation so that the current maximum limit, a total weight of 60 tonnes, is increased to 74 tonnes. The long term goal is to get 90 tonne trucks approved. ETT is a partnership between Volvo Trucks, Skogforsk (forest research), the Swedish Transport Administration, the Swedish Transport Agency, Skogsnäringen (forest industry), Parator (trailers), and other representatives in the automotive industry.
A Volvo FH16 from 2013 with a 16-litre 750 bhp engine. It transports timber from Överkalix to the Munksund sawmill in Piteå. This vehicle reduces carbon emissions by 20% and, at the same time, the cost is 20% lower compared with a standard timber truck. The truck, the only one of its kind, carries a load of 65 tonnes instead of 42 – i.e. 50% more timber. The total weight of the truck when fully laden is 90 tonnes and it is 30 metres long.
Piteå Gulf of Bothnia 50 km
UP TIME #2/2014
THE customer Text Daniel Fernandez Photo DSF
All In The Family Mega Heavy Transport Sdn. Bhd. is one of the most prominent family-run haulage operators in the country. We speak to owner, Mr. Law Kim Chew to find out more about the company and how they have become one of the top low loaders in the business.
T Mega Heavy Transport Sdn. Bhd. Country: Malaysia Head office: Selayang Owner: Law Kim Chew Founded: 1994 Number of trucks: 18 Volvo trucks Types of assignments: Low loader and cement.
here is no denying the importance of family and for Mr. Law Kim Chew this is especially true. As principal owner of Mega Heavy Transport Sdn. Bhd., Mr. Law is currently spearheading the company with his sons Law Boon Heong and Law Boon Han as well as his grandson, Ivan Law Fan Zher. “To be honest, I should have pushed my sons into the business earlier so that we could have expanded faster!”, jokes Mr. Law. But despite his jovial demeanour, there is no denying that Mega Heavy Sdn. Bhd. is one of the most successful low loader operators in the country, which is an impressive accomplishment to say the least considering Mr. Law’s humble beginnings.”I started as an earth works truck driver in 1986,” he tells us. “And then in 1994 I started the company and went into the low loader business.” Mr. Law also explained that the company is setting its sights on low loader, self loader, cement trucks and transport trucks and they have plans to expand and start the pull-trailer business as well. According to Mr. Law, Mega Heavy had its start in the cement tanker business with the aid of a Volvo F7 truck. “Later on, we moved to the Volvo F10 truck which we still have today. We have rebuilt the truck many times over and it has been working fine,” he adds. Today, Mega Heavy Sdn. Bhd. boasts 18 Volvo trucks of various years and models in its fleet, including two brand new Volvo FMX trucks. “I feel the reconditioned trucks are subjected to a lot of mechanical problems, wear and tear whilst older trucks also have bad fuel consumption”, says Mr. Law on his decision to purchase brand new trucks. “Volvo trucks also offer good reliability, and they come with exceptional after sales service along with abundant and affordable spare parts,” he adds. “The new Volvo trucks also offer no down time and quick service when needed.”
“My drivers, including one who has been with me since the start of my business, prefers Volvo trucks as they are comfortable and very easy to drive” So far, Mr. Law admits that the new Volvo FMX440 6x4 has had zero breakdowns and a total of five services done. ” I have to say I am very impressed with the level of service. When a call is made, the response time is very fast and efficient,” he adds. Interestingly, Mr. Law also pointed out that even his drivers prefer driving Volvo trucks. “My drivers, including one who has been with me since the start of my business, prefers Volvo trucks as they are comfortable and very easy to drive,” explains Mr. Law. “I feel Volvo trucks offer my drivers a relaxing drive with minimal stress.” Additionally, Mr. Law also explains that the technology and durability of Volvo trucks has also boosted his confidence with the brand. “I’ve noticed that the Volvo Engine Brake (VEB), which Volvo has patented help ease the brake usage and enable brake lining to last more than three years.” Mr. Law also singles out one of the main features of the truck that he particularly feels that puts the brand above other truck manufacturers. “Each Volvo truck comes with a gearbox and axle that is much more durable than the other trucks brands that we also have in our fleet.”
THE customer Text Daniel Fernandez Photo DSF
Moving With The Times A start in the shipping business was the spark that made Armada International (M) Sdn. Bhd., one of the leading haulage operators in Malaysia as Mr. J.S Chang, CEO and Group Managing Director explains.
t may be hard to believe but a humble start in the shipping business would ultimately prove to be one of the main building blocks for the creation of Armada International (M) Sdn. Bhd. One of the leading haulage operators in the country, the company was created in 2008 and thus far, it has grown into a highly successful haulage and logistics operation that primarily focuses on air freight, haulier, freight forwarding and custom broking. “I started out in 1987, in the shipping business immediately after school and learnt the ropes from there,” recalled owner J.S Chang, when asked about his start in the haulage and logistics business. “I slowly moved up in the company and eventually started a freight forwarding business ten years later,” he added. In 2008, Mr. Chang formed Armada International (M) Sdn. Bhd. with the aid of two brand new Volvo trucks. Despite its humble beginnings, Armada’s fleet has grown to 25 prime movers today, all of which are Volvo trucks. “We have bought five new Volvo trucks recently and we are looking to buy six more in the next few months”, revealed Mr. Chang. “By end of this year we will have a total of 30 Volvo trucks in our fleet.” A firm believer in the Volvo truck brand, Mr. Chang has been a loyal Volvo trucks customer since the day he started his haulage operations. And he’s always bought them brand new. “I have never purchased a second hand or reconditioned truck,” explained Mr. Chang. “In my experience I have found that reconditioned trucks are often subjected to a lot of mechanical problems and they are also not as fuel efficient as the newer trucks,” he added. “This is why I have always placed a huge emphasis on brand new Volvo trucks, as they are not only reliable and fuel efficient but they also come with a good warranty package,” Mr. Chang further elaborated. “Volvo Trucks Malaysia also has a very good after sales record, which is important
Armada International (M) Sdn Bhd
Country: Malaysia Head office: Klang Owner: J.S Chang Founded: 2008 Number of trucks: 25 Types of assignments: Air freight, haulier and freight forwarding.
“By end of this year we will have a total of 30 Volvo trucks in our fleet” for us and there is also a ready supply of spare parts, which is vital as this can reduce the turnaround time whenever one of our trucks is in need of a new part or component.” With a huge fleet of Volvo trucks at his disposal, Mr. Chang is set to drive Armada International (M) Sdn. Bhd. for further expansion. “At the moment we are a total logistics operator,” explained Mr. Chang. “Armada International provides door-to-door service from the container ship right to doorstep for all consignments, bulk and container as well.” Mr. Chang is also looking to expand his operations into the warehousing business. “At the moment we do air freight, haulier, freight forwarding and custom broking, so warehousing is the next logical step we should take, in order to make Armada International a true total logistics company. Nevertheless despite his ambitions, the soft-spoken businessman is aware of the difficulties the Malaysian logistics market is facing at the moment. “The economy is challenging
and there are a lot of new competitors entering the market,” said Mr. Chang. “At the moment, it is a slow growth but there is room to expand, however those of us in the haulage industry do need more support and infrastructure to be given in order to boost the industry further,” he explained. “Personally I think we need to have a proper highway built for the haulage industry players in the area around North Point with good, visible directions to get to all ports in Malaysia,” said Mr. Chang. “I also feel that we should have Euro4 diesel in our market as it will benefit the newer trucks, ensuring that they operate within their optimum capabilities.” With his hands pretty full at the moment, Mr. Chang however admitted he has no plans to slow down anytime soon. “I want to continue doing this because logistics is in my blood,” he said. “And I want my children to continue with the business too and perhaps take Armada International to greater heights in the future.” UPTIME #2/2014
me & my volvo
Text Daniel Fernandez Photo DSF
RAJANDREN A/L RAMAN, JOHOR
“We have to follow a ‘goal zero’ which is to have no incidents while transporting fuel” A truck driver for over 20 years, Rajandren A/L Raman has seen the best and the worst in the local trucking industry. Now, after so many years of delivering all kinds of goods to all four corners of Peninsula Malaysia, he is finally settled in his role as a fuel delivery truck driver. “It’s the best trucking job,” he says with a smile. But like all transportation jobs, truck drivers too are more commonly subjected to all kinds of hazard and issues when they are out on the open highway. But Rajandren admits more respect is given when anyone commands a truck carrying a highlyflammable product. “Road users are definitely more observant!”, he jokes. Due to the nature of the product he hauls, Rajandren admits that there are a lot of safety protocols and guidelines that he and drivers in this line have to follow. “There is a strict policy to keep to a strict speed limit of no more than 80km/h on highways and all drivers also have to follow strict driver rest hours to ensure a high level of safety.” Rajandren elaborates further. “I work for Fueller Logistics Sdn. Bhd., a fuel transportation company, and we hold safety as our number one priority” he tells us. “To give you an idea, one of our contractors is a fuel company, and they are extremely strict about on the road safety,” Rajandren explains. “We have to follow a ‘goal zero’ which is to have no incidents while transporting fuel.” And Rajandren believes that this is a goal that should be followed by all drivers, not just those in the fuel transportation industry. “We have a responsibility as truck drivers and we have to own up to it, because the job isn’t just about moving product.”
Throughout his experience Rajandren has fortunately managed to avoid a major incident such as a hijack. But nevertheless there are precautions in place in the event an attempt is made. “Our trucks come with a panic button, which once activated will send a signal to our call centre where they will despatch a car or the police to us via our GPS tracker,” Rajandren reveals. Strangely enough though, the only incident Rajandren has come to experience involves school children. He tells a story not many of us would have experienced. “Believe it or not, along the PLUS highway from JB to KL, I’ve had kids throw coconut husks at the truck as well as other vehicles,” he tells us. “To them it may seem like fun but it is dangerous to say the least. And this happens more frequently during the school holidays.” In terms of his preferred brand of truck, Rajandren stands by Volvo trucks. “Volvo has a better safety and the quality of truck seems better than the rest,” he says. “And because of this it has made my day-to-day job a lot more enjoyable.”
Age 48 years old Lives In Johor Company Fueller Logistics Sdn. Bhd. is a leading fuel transportation provider in the southern corridor of Malaysia. Background 20 years of truck driving experience, predominantly in fuel transportation.
INSIDE VOLVO Text Lina Skafvenstedt Photo Sรถren Hรฅkanlind
UP TIME #2/2014
SAFETY RESEARCH 2.0 UP TIME #2/2014
Using an advanced driving simulator, Volvo Trucks can study driver behaviour in depth. This is how the world’s best active safety systems are developed.
he truck drives out after making a right-hand turn and accelerates along the straight stretch of road ahead. Its engine speed increases and the trees flash past the cab windows. The vibrations from the uneven road surface can be clearly felt in the body. Nothing surprising there – except that everything that is heard, felt and seen is simulated by a computer! ”The basic idea behind the simulator is to create a feeling of reality. It should sound and feel exactly as it does when you drive a truck on a normal road,” says Kristoffer Tagesson, an industrial PhD student at Volvo Trucks.
Industrial PhD students Kristoffer Tagesson (top) and Gustav Markkula (above) both work extensively with the driving simulator. 26
This driving simulator, which is owned by the Swedish research institute, VTI (Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute), is regarded as one of the most advanced in the world. The research that is being conducted is designed to develop safety for current and future vehicles. Volvo Trucks is one of a number of partners within the transport industry that are conducting research in the simulator with a view to developing the world’s safest trucks. Collision tests are excellent – they can be breath-taking to watch and they are also one of the most effective ways of testing truck capacity in a collision, but traffic safety is so much more than just smashed windows and windscreens and crumpled sheet metal. “In a collision test, we can see what happens at the actual moment of impact – but what happens before that? How do we know that the active safety systems don’t distract the driver in a critical situation but instead actually help him or her? These are the types of question that are being investigated here,” explains Kristoffer Tagesson. He is sitting in the operator’s room, where a number of computers document the way the test
UP TIME #2/2014
“The basic idea behind the simulator is to create a feeling of reality. It should sound and feel exactly as it does when you drive a truck on a normal road.” KR ISTOFFER TAGESSON, INDUSTR IAL PHD STUDENT VOLVO GROUP TRUCKS TECHNOLOGY
UP TIME #2/2014
“As a researcher, it’s important to be given the chance to meet our drivers and hear what they actually think of our products and solutions. I think this is the key to success.” GUSTAV MARKKULA, INDUSTRIAL PHD STUDENT VOLVO GROUP TRUCKS TECHNOLOGY
drivers’ drives, watches and positions him/herself on the road. Enormous amounts of information are collected. One of the main advantages of this driving simulator, which is a relatively new kind of test technology, is that it is now possible to include the driver at an early stage in the development of new products. “It has traditionally been necessary to build everything first – roads, vehicles and safety systems – before tests could be conducted to see if it works in practice. However, it is now possible to do this in parallel,” explains Kristoffer Tagesson. In other words, the driving simulator makes it possible to test new vehicles in future driving environments and to do it now. Peter Nilsson, another industrial PhD student at Volvo Trucks, is involved in precisely this kind of project. “The work that is being done on vehicle and infrastructure development is based on a long-term perspective. With this simulator, which is able to visualise basically any road environment, we can optimise these developments together,” he says. Peter Nilsson’s project is called Safe Corridors and it is investigating ways of finding safe corridors for long vehicle combinations, between 27 and 34 metres. “By 2020-2030, I am convinced that we shall have these long vehicle combinations on the road, as they are such an environmentally efficient alternative. By then, however, we need to find a way of facilitating driving for the driver, as 28
knowing the exact position of the trailer is a real challenge,” explains Peter Nilsson. So, using a sophisticated driver system, it will be possible in the future for the actual vehicle to calculate a safe position for itself on the road, using information from the surrounding road, signs and other vehicles. “The idea is that this autonomous system will intervene and take control from the driver if it sees that the vehicle is outside the safe corridor. Our challenge now is to find out how this transfer should be made, as it’s important that it feels natural for the driver.” A test was recently conducted in the driving simulator in which 20 drivers tested two different autonomous driving systems. They were then asked subjectively to assess which of the systems was better. However, as an experienced driver knows better than anyone else how a vehicle should behave on the road, Peter Nilsson also allowed the test drivers to drive the long vehicle combination themselves. “We were then able to record and objectively analyse how these experienced drivers drove a 30-metre vehicle on challenging roads. In the future, we shall be able to use this as part of the basic documentation when we develop safe corridors and design this autonomous system.” The tests that are being conducted are made possible by the sophisticated technology in the simulator. The simulator is located on two
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The simulator is located on two intersecting rails, which make it possible to create the experience of driving forwards and backwards, as well as turning. UP TIME #2/2014
Clockwise from top: Peter Nilsson, industrial PhD student at Volvo Trucks. Nine projectors are used to create the simulator’s 180 degree visual world; A hexapod underneath the cab replicates steering movements and chassis vibrations to create a more realistic driving experience.
WATCH THE FILM
Collision Warning with Emergency Brake put to the test. www.youtube.com/ volvotrucks
intersecting rails, which make it possible to create the experience of driving forwards and backwards, as well as turning. The truck cab is also able to move vertically. This creates a realistic driving experience, when it comes to both steering functions and chassis vibrations. The cab is also equipped with ten cameras, all of which document the driver’s behaviour. Five cameras are visibly located in the windscreen in front of the driver. They use infrared light to record and register all the driver’s eye movements. This enables researchers to see exactly where, when and how often the driver looks at the road and looks down at his/her phone and GPS (satnav system), for example. Five of the cameras are well concealed inside the cab, so that the driver does not think about them. They document other typical things the driver’s do – everything from handling the steering wheel to accelerator and pedal movements using his/her feet is recorded. Another exciting project which is currently being run by Volvo Trucks is aiming to find a
mathematical description of driver behaviour – a so-called driver model. This will then be used to evaluate the active safety systems. Systems, already on the market, such as Collision Warning with Emergency Brake have been tested in the simulator. One by one, 46 drivers sat in the simulator without knowing what was going to happen while they were driving. After 30 minutes driving, a critical situation was simulated and the safety system was activated. “This enables us to see how quickly the driver reacts to the warning, how he or she manages with and without the system and whether there is any difference in the reactions of the people who already have some experience of the system. By generating this detailed picture of the way the driver actually behaves, we can identify potential for improving our own safety system,” says Gustav Markkula, an industrial PhD student who is responsible for this project. “As a researcher, it’s important to be given the chance to meet our drivers and hear what they actually think of our products and solutions. I think this is the key to success.”■
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HOW IT WORKS: COLLISION WARNING WITH EMERGENCY BRAKE This active safety system has two parts. The first warns the driver, while the other applies the braking system to avoid a collision with vehicles in front of the truck.
Driver Assistance Control Unit All the information from the camera, radar, truck and driver behaviour is gathered in the Driver Assistance Control Unit, DACU. The software in the DACU analyses this information and activates the warning system and the truck braking system if an accident is about to occur.
Head Up Display If an accident is about to occur, the driver is warned by an audio signal and a red light that is projected onto the inside of the windscreen.
Camera and radar
Sensors register information about the truck such as speed and direction and the total weight of the vehicle combination.
Steering wheel and pedal The system collects information about the steering-wheel and pedal movements.
An advanced camera identifies the range and type of object that is in front of the truck, such as a passenger car, a motorcycle or another truck. The radar unit measures speeds and distances to objects in front of the truck.
FROM WARNING TO FULL BRAKING
Warning If the system detects that the truck is in a critical situation, the driver is alerted by an audio warning and a light signal from the Head Up Display (HUD).
Braking If the driver fails to react to the warning, a signal is sent to the braking system and the truck starts to brake. The engine speed is reduced and the gearbox is disengaged.
Full brake If the driver is unable to react in time, the truck is finally braked with full force and the brake lights are flashing. Once stopped, the parking brake is activated. UP TIME #2/2014
CLASSIC PARTS FOR CLASSIC TRUCKS Identifying the need to cater to owners of older trucks, Volvo Trucks Malaysia is now offering Volvo Genuine Parts in a bid to keep these vehicles working in optimum condition.
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ecognising the fact that there are numerous haulage and transport operators that are utilising older Volvo Trucks in their respective fleets, Volvo Trucks Malaysia has embarked on a new classic parts campaign. The new campaign is targeted specifically at owners of older Volvo trucks in the hopes that they can keep their trucks running at an optimum level so that they continue to be reliable. “We know that there are many haulage and transport operators in the local market who still utilise and rely on these older trucks or classic trucks in their daily business. This is why it is important for us to keep servicing this specific market,” explained Mr. Chan Weng Loong, Parts Manager, Aftermarket, Asia Ocenia Sales, Region Malaysia. Based on estimated figures, there are roughly over 3000 Volvo truck models on Malaysian roads. However this number does not include the re-conditioned Volvo trucks that have been imported into the country in the last 20 years. “As seen on our roads today, there are many 20-plus year-old trucks running and still being used on a daily basis,” added Mr. Chan Weng Loong. “Trucks like the FM9, FL10, FM10, FM12 are still being driven frequently, and have been identified as running in pretty large numbers too,” he further elaborated. “As such it is important for us to service these owners with Genuine Volvo Parts, so that their trucks perform maximum uptime, which helps keep their profitability up and their business going.” In the market, various suppliers provide “will-fit” parts that are not up to the OEM’s (original equipment manufacturer) or original part’s specifications. In return, they do not provide the required reliability and precision that truck owners require. “When you purchase a Volvo Truck, you’re ensured that it was built with attention to quality, down to the smallest of details,” explained Mr. Chan Weng Loong. “This is
something which Volvo Trucks has a long-standing tradition with.” In essence, it means when any Volvo Truck leaves the factory gates for the first time it is in 100% original condition, which is why Volvo Trucks has chosen to embark on this new Classic Parts campaign – to ensure these older trucks continue to operate in an optimum fashion that adheres to Volvo Trucks stringent quality levels. “The Classic Parts campaign offers owners of these older trucks an affordable and sustainable way of operating their truck in the high quality and safety that was originally built into it,” elaborated Mr. Chan Weng Loong. “The focus of this campaign is on the 4 models of, FL10, FM9, FM10 & FM12 targeting on wear & tear parts, engine and chassis components.”
The Classic Parts campaign offers owners of these classic trucks an affordable and sustainable way of operating their truck in the high quality and safety that was originally built into it. UPTIME #2/2014
Mr. Chan Weng Loong also cited an example of the usage of oil filters, where there are numerous options available in today’s marketplace. “Yes, there is a steady supply of cheaper oil filters and parts, but they are often not the better option. This is why most of these trucks do not run as effectively, as they should, especially when they’re subjected to using these ‘will-fit’ parts,” he clarified. Interestingly, Mr. Chan Weng Loong also pointed out that Malaysia is the first country under Volvo Trucks’ operation to offer this service and the intention is to grow it regionally. “The emphasis is wear and tear parts, engine components and also chassis components. This service has been approved by the regional office and soon other markets in Asia will be adopting this system,” he added. Volvo Trucks Malaysia will offer these parts at a competitive price, which will hopefully persuade older truck owners to move away from purchasing ‘will-fit’ parts and non-OEM parts that might not last as long or perform as well. These parts are available now and you can contact your nearest authorized Volvo Malaysia dealerships nationwide for further details.
“All prices indicated in the brochure are nett selling price. Each part number contains details of description, truck models used on and configuration for ease of identifications.” All the parts under this campaign come with a standard Volvo Trucks Malaysia 12-month warranty against manufacturer’s defects which non-OEM and ‘willfit’ parts lack in offering to buyers. The Volvo Trucks Malaysia classic parts brochure can be found at www.volvotrucks.com.my
GOING SMART The new Dynafleet online fleet management system
he advancement of technologies has improved by leaps and bounds in the last few years. Today, technology not only helps us with our daily lives but also allows us to improve on aspects like the way we do business. This is even more evident in the field of haulage and transportation with an abundant variety of technologies and systems, all of which are created to enable fleet owners and operators to monitor their trucks and manage their fleets. The Dynafleet system, stands as the perfect embodiment of this technology. The Volvo Dynafleet is Volvo Trucks’ Online Fleet Management System, which is a software system that basically allows truck owners to monitor the run cycle of their truck. With over 90,000 systems installed globally with 4,000 customers since its inception in 1994, Dynafleet is not an entirely new product but is an enhanced version that extends beyond its original capacity. “The software has been upgraded to offer driver drive cycle times and vehicle positioning as well,” explains Mr. Tanasegaran Kesavan, Service Solutions Manager Aftermarket, Volvo Trucks Malaysia. There’s also a new messaging system to communicate with the drivers on board, which owners should find immensely useful.
“Dynafleet provides the ability to communicate with the truck and its driver as well as to find out how the condition of the truck is in terms of fuel balance, braking, emissions and exact fuel consumption,” added Mr. Kesavan. In addition to keeping owners up to date with how the truck is driven and its current position, Dynafleet also helps keeps tabs on other important statistics and information pertaining to each truck. “The service also allows for online remote software updates which means the UPTIME #2/2014
truck operator can continue to run his fleet uninterrupted with no need to bring in the truck to Volvo Trucks service for a software update,” explain Mr. Kesavan. “Best of all, the system can alert the truck owner on its servicing due date and even contact the owner for an appointment.” WORKING AROUND THE CLOCK Dynafleet works as a silent helper to the trucking industry. Volvo trucks’ software system is unlike any other external system available in the market as it concentrates more on how each driver is driving the truck in real time. “Some of these external systems, which are currently available, act more of a security protocol for truck fleet owners,” explained Mr.Kesavan. “The Dynafleet system however offers more than that as it is also able to relay additional information to fleet owners such as truck location and fuel usage.” This also means that owners can now track their trucks with relative ease. Detailed maps powered by GoogleMaps will keep owners apprised of all the necessary information they need for total control over their respective operations. And the fact that owners know exactly where the load and trucks are at any given time or day will benefit them immensely. In the future, the Dynafleet hardware and
Dynafleet provides the ability to communicate with the truck and its driver as well as to find out how the condition of the truck is in terms of fuel balance, braking, emissions and exact fuel consumption. 36
software will be installed in all new trucks with the system only being activated when the customer officially makes a request for it. REAL-TIME MONITORING A relatively new introduction is the Dynafleet app which allows drivers to check on their vehicles in real time, even when they are no where near their truck. This app will be made available to Malaysian drivers soon. This will allow drivers to track their own performance and in a way provide them better knowledge about their trucks and how to drive them more efficiently. This could result in each driver gaining more incentives or rewards from their company. “The system shows fuel usage in zones, like idling time, highway cruising, city traffic and average fuel consumption. We are also able to offer our customers detailed reports and analysis on an adhoc and scheduled basis.” Mr. Kesavan further elaborated. “Additionally,
the system also takes into account how much of the trucks brakes are being used.” SAVING TIME AND MONEY In addition to offering customers the ability to keep track of their vehicles, Dynafleet also provides cost savings to business owners. “The system can actually reduce a lot of the work in the office,” explains Mr. Kesavan. “Dynafleet automatically handles much of the work that was done manually, like controlling your fleet and analysing driver and vehicle performance. This reduces a lot of administration and frees time for other tasks,” he added. The fleet manager has easy access to all the connected vehicles in the fleet, easily pinpointing critical data and thus will be able to take immediate actions. This at the end of the day, helps reduce costs and optimise vehicle productivity. The complete Dynafleet system will be available in Malaysia very soon. Do contact your nearest Volvo Dealer to find out more.
the year: 1959
Text Olivia Krantz Photo Colourbox, Volvo Trucks
Barbie, pacemaker and a crashlanding
The space race between the USSR and the USA is in full swing in 1959, with the Soviet Union scoring points by being the first nation in the world in crash landing a spacecraft (Luna 2) on the moon. Meanwhile diving legend Jacques-Yves Cousteau discovers a new way to explore the ocean, together with engineer Jean Mollard. With the SP-350 Denise, the ”diving saucer ”, they create a submersible craft that combines the submarine’s
ability to deep-sea dive with a diver’s freedom of movement. The craft can go down to 400 metres and thanks to sharp headlights and a gripper arm, passengers can enjoy a close-up experience of life under water. The same year, the Swede Yngve Eriksson files a patent on a toothpaste containing sodium monofluorophosphate and chalk, a combination that proves effective against tooth decay. A patent is granted
by several countries and today’s fluoride toothpaste is born. In 1959, an American toy doll is launched that will move into millions of girls’ bedrooms worldwide. The doll is named Barbie after its creator Ruth Handler’s daughter Barbara. That same year, the pacemaker is invented and an innovation that is frequently seen both on red carpets and at sports events worldwide sees the light of day – namely spandex.
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The impact test 1959 is the year that Volvo is first in the world to crash-test their vehicle by swinging a pendulum weighing a tonne into a cab. The test is still used today, and although it has evolved over the decades, it still consists of the three basic tests that have been performed for over 50 years. First, the cab’s roof is subjected to a weight of 15 tonnes. After this, a cylinder -shaped pendulum strikes the cab’s front left support pillar. Finally the pendulum hits the back wall of the cab. The pendulum is
released from a height of three metres. The three stages correspond to an accident sequence in which the truck driver first drives off the road and the vehicle then rolls over and crashes into a tree or other hard object. The blow to the back of the cab is equivalent to the truck’s trailer sliding forward and hitting the cab from the rear. To pass the test, physical damage to the cab should not endanger the driver or other passengers’ survival space. The cab must also retain its original structure, with no
major holes or protruding sharp edges. The doors must remain closed, but at the same time it must be possible to open them without tools or other equipment. In 1960 the test became a legal standard in Sweden, as it was until April 2009 when it was replaced by an EU law, ECR 29. This law does not require that the cab is subjected to as much force as previously. Even so, Volvo Trucks has stuck to its tough impact test, which has gone from being standard in Sweden to becoming Volvo-unique.
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