BOC has taken delivery of the UK’s first ADR-compliant dual-fuel vehicle, able to run on conventional diesel or liquefied natural gas (LNG).
It can now be seen on the roads of the North West of England, delivering hydrogen gas to BOC’s customers across the region.
The ADR regulations are stringent legislative requirements that vehicles must meet before they are approved for the carriage of dangerous goods. Enhancements to standard vehicle technology include increased heat shielding, higher specification electrical systems, etc.
BOC is the UK’s largest supplier of industrial and medical gases. Many of these supplies are ‘business-critical’ for the company’s customers. Failure to deliver could have significant consequences for their businesses or services. For this reason, any decision to switch to new technology must be based on rigorous reliability testing. So, the new vehicle is currently being put through its paces.
For Richard Gearing, BOC’s Director of Operations and Distribution, this is part of a long term plan. “One of our guiding principles at BOC is to do no harm to people or the environment. So we are keen to look at any opportunities to incorporate more environmentally-friendly technologies across our business. However, they have to be robust and reliable which is why we test them extensively before committing ourselves to them. If the new vehicle trials prove successful, we will look for greater opportunities to introduce dual-fuel vehicles within our fleet.”
LNG-powered trucks emit significantly less pollutants. The BOC vehicle is expected to emit up to 65% less nitrogen oxides compared to conventional drivetrains, and no heavy metals or soot particles. Burning natural gas will reduce CO2 emissions by around 20%. Noise pollution is also reduced, since these engines are quieter.
1. The new dual-fuel traction unit is a Mercedes Actros 2546 6x2.
2. BOC has over 500 vehicles in its UK & Ireland delivery fleet.
3. The new vehicle is currently undergoing a six-month evaluation programme.
4. ADR Regulations are concerned with the carriage of dangerous goods by road (ADR = Accord européen relatif au transport international des marchandises Dangereuses par Route). For more information, see: www.unece.org/trans/danger/publi/adr/adr_e.html or www.hse.gov.uk/cdg/manual/adrcarriage.htm