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How Truck Overhauls Are Saving Staples, UPS Carbon and Cash

The move from traditional gas trucks to hybrids and electric isn't just a marketing stunt made to make companies appear caring towards the environment. As it turns out, the shift from traditional fuels to modern day strategies can have a significant impact on the bottom line as well. As this article by Mary Catherine O'Connor explains, many companies that live off of the health of their supply chains are throwing their hat into the truck overhaul ring (and finding themselves better off for it, too). The solution isn't just an all-or-none decision ““ companies that have done well decide how to utilize hybrid or electric vehicles in their fleets. Judging weight, distance, and time constraints, larger manufacturers have determined just how and where the new trucks should be used: Aside from making sound business sense, alternative-fuel trucks must be matched to the ways in which they will be used. For example, a fully electric truck would not make sense for interstate routes, since electric motors are more efficient in stop-and-go, urban traffic. The weights of loads are another important consideration; Saltzgiver notes that Coca-Cola is using fully electric trucks in its service fleet rather than as delivery trucks, since the high weight of beverages would quickly deplete the battery's charge. Potato chips, however, are a different matter altogether. Earlier this month, Frito-Lay announced its plans to add 45 electric delivery trucks to its California fleet by the end of the year. This will boost the company's all-electric fleet to 275, nationwide. Frito-Lay says these trucks have already been driven more than one million miles. However impressive the changes have been so far, the manufacturers of hybrid and electric trucks need to keep pushing for better battery life and more optimized equipment for large scale adoption. Small changes such as auxiliary engines for sleeper cabs and intelligent power usage may make electric solutions the norm instead of the exception.

About Matthew Kabik

Matthew Kabik is the former Editor of Computer Aid's Accelerating IT Success. He worked at Computer Aid, Inc. from 2008 to 2014 in the Harrisburg offices, where he was a copywriter, swordsman, social media consultant, and trainer before moving into editorial.

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