A common need in the shipping and logistics industry is to move trailers and cargo containers around the yard, terminal, or port. Many companies still rely on conventional road trucks to do so, but there is a better solution available. Terminal tractors, also known as shunt trucks, yard trucks, or spotter trucks, are an ideal solution for moving cargo containers and trailers around a storage facility.
Move More Cargo Per Shift
Time is money, especially in an industry that revolves around delivering goods as quickly as possible. A terminal tractor can move 3-4x more cargo per shift when compared to a conventional road truck, as they have specialized functions that save time. For example, terminal tractors feature a sliding door with a catwalk. This may sound like a minor design element, but it allows the operator to hook up the trailer and air lines without having to dismount, walk around, connect everything, then climb back into the cabin. This crucial feature ends up saving minutes of effort on every container or trailer moved, minutes that continually add up throughout the day.
Terminal tractor operators can also raise or lower trailer stands from the cabin rather than getting out to do so.
The conditions in a shipping facility or port are often cramped, tightly packed, and hectic. None of these words are things a commercial truck driver wants to hear! Terminal tractors, however, are better suited for such an operating environment, as they have a shorter wheelbase and solid-mounted rear axle, giving them a tighter turn radius. All this means that they can easily navigate around obstacles that a road truck would struggle with.
Easier to Operate
Terminal tractors are considered powered industrial trucks by OSHA and ANSI, and therefore do not require a commercial driver’s license. This means that it is easier to train and certify new employees to operate one, allowing you to maintain your operational tempo even in the face of employee turnover.
Better Driver Safety
Thanks to their design features, terminal tractors minimize the most common injuries truck drivers face. Not having to constantly get in and out of the cabin means fewer chances for the driver to slip and fall, and a hydraulic fifth wheel that lifts the trailer reduces the odds for a repetitive stress injury from cranking the landing dolly.
Additionally, terminal tractors are often built with superior visibility in mind, which prevents collisions from happening.
If you’re looking to expand your company’s operations, consider a terminal tractor rental from Big Truck Rental. We offer a full range of vehicles for both short-term and long-term trucking solutions, as well as rent-to-purchase options for many of our vehicles. With a terminal truck rental, you can add a new vehicle to your fleet without committing to a full purchase right out of the gate. Give us a call today and learn about how we can help your company with its trucking and commercial vehicle needs!