Thorworld Industries has installed three fixed loading bay solutions – each comprising a ramp, platform and dock leveller – to give returnable transit packaging specialist PPS Midlands Ltd an efficient logistics operation at its new premises near Uttoxeter.
With its business growing 25% year-on-year, PPS has relocated to the new 75,000 sq ft facility in Marchington, Uttoxeter in order to service existing and future customers, who use PPS for the management, rental, pooling and repairs of all types of returnable transit packaging.
With the RTP concept relying on a rapid cycle of returning the packaging to PPS for washing before redistribution into the supply chain, it was essential that the company established a safe, fast and efficient system of unloading and unloading.
As the Marchington site already incorporated three doors for loading, PPS had to find the most cost-effective and user-friendly system to convert these to ‘dock level.’ Having previously worked with Thorworld, PPS operations director Andy Flynn asked the company to devise a suitable solution.
Thorworld proposed a bespoke system for each doorway, comprising a ramp, platform, electro hydraulic dock leveller, roller shutter door and dock shelters. In contrast to conventional dedicated loading bays, each set-up is simply bolted into space – sparing the need for costly and time-consuming civil works – and can easily be moved to an alternative location if required in future.
Given that PPS’ warehouse operation uses powered pallet trucks for loading/unloading, Thorworld advocated the use of its Deluxe Type 6 Access Ramp, with a modified solid treadplate decking for improved access.
For safety in the prevailing environment at the plant, the Thorworld solution also included anti-slip surfaces to optimise traction, access steps and side platforms which provide protected access to operate the leveller, and collapsible dock shelters to minimise weather ingress.
According to Andy Flynn, the solution meets and even exceeds PPS’ brief: “Combining a leveller, platform and ramp into one system ensures that we can load and unload our RTP pallets quickly on to and off the platform, without immediately needing to transport pallets off-ramp.
“At the same time, the semi-permanent nature of the Thorworld solutions gives us greater flexibility and manoeuvrability in the future should we need to reconfigure our warehouse operation.
“Thorworld has been excellent throughout the process, from design to installation, and the loading systems were finished on time and on budget to support our smooth transition into the new facility.”