Stevens Earns Thermo King Energy Efficiency Leader Award

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Stevens Transport Incorporates Innovative Solutions that Reduce Fuel Consumption by 6.6 Percent and Idle Time by 48 Percent

Bloomington, Minn., Aug. 2, 2011 – Leaders at Stevens Transport, an eco-conscious, refrigerated transport carrier headquartered in Dallas, have applied innovative thinking to reduce fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. Using a variety of solutions that include fuel management efforts, new technology and a proactive driver training program, Stevens has decreased its fuel usage by 6.6 percent and idle time by 48 percent.

The company, which offers over the road, intermodal and logistical solutions within the continental United States, Canada and Mexico, has also incorporated a program to refurbish refrigeration units which allows them to keep certain equipment in service twice as long, helping reduce their environmental footprint. Stevens Transport leaders are committed to environmental initiatives, and they meticulously manage their efficiency and sustainability efforts.

Several factors motivate the sustainability efforts undertaken by Stevens Transport, including the need to control rising fuel costs, which are currently one of their largest expenses. Company leaders addressed this by analyzing fuel burn against engine run and idle time reports.

Their research discovered large variances among their fleet of drivers. In response, Stevens outfitted their entire fleet with Thermo King Tri-Pak auxiliary power units (APUs) to address the variances and to enable idle time reduction of 48 percent.

Stevens Transport undertakes many energy-saving and sustainability efforts which reflect their environmental philosophy, such as clean idle engines, auxiliary power units (APUs), energy-efficient refrigeration units, aerodynamic trailer skirts, oil recycling, fuel efficient tires, tire retreading and continued training. Overall, their efforts have reduced the fuel consumption of their 2,000 tractors and 3,000 refrigerated trailers by millions of gallons while paving the way for future improvements.

This week, leaders from Thermo King, a manufacturer of transport temperature control systems for a variety of mobile applications and a brand of Ingersoll Rand, will recognize Stevens Transport with the Thermo King Energy Efficiency Leader Award. The award recognizes Stevens Transport for their commitment to energy and operational efficiency.

Details of the award presentation:
  • Ray Pittard, president for Thermo King North America, will present the award for Stevens Transport to Clay M. Aaron, president.
  • The award presentation will be at 10 a.m. on Aug. 3 at Stevens Transport corporate headquarters in Dallas at 9757 Military Parkway.
Stevens Transport Incorporates Innovative Solutions that Reduce Fuel Consumption by 6.6 Percent and Idle Time by 48 Percent – 2

“We are honored to be recognized for our commitment to maximizing sustainability throughout our organization,” said Clay M. Aaron, president of Stevens Transport. “We find that our success – whether increasing energy and operational efficiency or lowering costs – all comes down to the human touch.”

Stevens Transport identifies customized solutions
Stevens Transport also implemented a replacement program to take well-maintained APUs off tractors that have reached the end of their service life and to recycle them on new tractors. The APU generates environmentally conscious power while heating or cooling the cab without idling the tractor engine.

Even before Stevens Transport introduced the refurbishment program, they significantly increased energy efficiency and lowered exhaust emissions by adding APUs to the company’s entire fleet in 2010.

The company originally committed to installing APUs for direct efficiencies they could gain as well as to help retain drivers. “A well-rested driver typically operates a vehicle in a more efficient and safe manner,” said Aaron. “Although having the right equipment is important, the driver still plays a pivotal role in fuel consumption.”

With ongoing safety regulations and limits on the number of hours drivers can operate put in place by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, Stevens Transport has found that drivers have responded positively to the use of APUs.

Stevens Transport has further increased operational and energy efficiency with OptiSet™ Plus, a customized temperature control system. This solution uses controls that run refrigeration units only as needed to precisely control temperatures. Use of these controls protects cargo and reduces engine run time, emissions and costs.

This temperature control solution offers more than 500 preset temperature options and streamlines product decisions in advance. Fleet managers and drivers can collaborate to identify a tightly controlled temperature range based on the products commodity to yield more consistent product quality and more efficient refrigeration.

Sustainability efforts have also included a driver training program that diligently informs them on system capabilities so they can use the technology to its fullest. The company offers a driver fuel bonus program to reinforce efficient equipment operation.

Moving forward, Stevens Transport leaders are testing un-tethered two-way communication applications to increase research by monitoring trailers and refrigeration units. They are also evaluating trailer pre-cooling, correct operating modes for refrigeration units, proper product temperatures for cargo and options for minimizing fuel theft.

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About Steven’s Transport
Founded as a family-owned and -operated business, Stevens Transport has matured into a leading North American refrigerated transport carrier. In 1980, Steven L. Aaron envisioned a refrigerated transport company unlike any other -- a company where people came first; where forward-thinking employees could be matched with the latest technological advances and superior equipment; and where customers could become partners. He founded Stevens transport, giving rise to what has since become one of the most successful privately held companies in the United States.