J.B. Hunt to Operate the Freightliner CNG Trucks in Houston
Via a New Leasing Arrangement with Ryder for Maintenance
And for Installation of Quantum Back-of-Cab CNG Tank Arrays
Ryder System and Anheuser-Busch this morning celebrated their commitment for 66 compressed natural gas trucks to replace the beer giant’s existing fleet in Houston.
The trucks are being leased by Anheuser-Busch from Ryder and will be operated by J.B. Hunt in what the beverage firm’s senior transportation director James Sembrot terms a unique arrangement to facilitate use of the clean fuel.
Normally, Sembrot told F&F, J.B. Hunt would buy the trucks and haul the beer. “This is the first time that we’ve changed from that model,” he said, explaining that the new arrangement relieves Hunt of maintenance and residual value issues, as these concerns are assumed by Ryder.
Ryder’s Biggest NGV Deal to Date
The deal “marks Anheuser-Busch’s first conversion of an entire fleet and represents a significant milestone in demonstrating the company’s commitment to reducing environmental impact in logistics,” states a release. It also represents Ryder’s first project with Anheuser-Busch and Ryder’s largest natural gas vehicle deployment to date.
Ryder, which earlier this summer inked a supply deal with Quantum for Q-RailLite and Q-CabLite CNG fuel cylinder assemblies (F&F, August 12), is installing 166-DGE/diesel gallon equivalent back-of-cab fuel systems on the trucks for Anheuser-Busch. “All Ryder’s CNG fuel systems are Quantum’s,” says Quantum’s Hernan Henriquez.
“We have a multi-year agreement,” he told F&F. Quantum uses its Q-Lite brand Type IV CNG cylinders in its CNG fuel cylinder assemblies.
Sembrot credits support from state incentive programs for helping make the Houston fleet conversion happen – Ryder participates in TNGVGP, the Texas Natural Gas Vehicle Grant Program, which is funded by Texas Emissions Reduction Plan (TERP) initiatives, and is administered by TCEQ, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.
Just in Time for Football
“Houston is a strategic choice due to the central location to our facilities and distribution radius,” he said in the announcement, “as well as its proximity to fueling stations.” Ryder will maintain the new Freightliner trucks in Houston at one of the facilities it’s upgraded to handle NGV work.
Anheuser-Busch noted that “the CNG conversion comes as the 2014 football season kicks off one of the company’s busiest shipping periods of the year – with 17 million cases of beer shipped by the Houston fleet during third quarter.”
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Source: Ryder and Anheuser-Busch with Fleets & Fuels follow-up