Supported by Volker Seitz, Director Business Development at Kögel, and EU parliamentarian Markus Ferber, German operator Siegfried Serrahn recently had the opportunity to address the European Commission on the operational advantages of ‘moderately extended’ semi-trailers.
Using a scale model, Mr Serrahn specifically pointed out the difference between the 1.3m extension Kögel has chosen for its ‘Euro’ model – making for a combined length 17.8m – and the EU’s Long Truck approach, which would allow for a total length of 25.25m.
Addressing several high-level representatives of the European Commission as well as the Parliamentary Spokesman of the Transport Committee, Serrahn and Seitz argued that the Euro’s moderate extension would be less detrimental on existing infrastructure.
“A trailer extended by 1.3 metres has a positive effect on road safety and does not need any additional investment in infrastructure – existing parking spaces and emergency lay-bys can continued to be used without modification,” said Seitz.
“Having a length of just 17.8 metres, our extended semi-trailer combinations are [significantly] shorter than a Long Truck but offer up to seven tonnes more payload,” he added.
“Extended trailers are particularly economical and environmentally-friendly in comparison, with conventional semi-trailer combinations, because of the increased volume of up to 10 cubic metres.
“With stacked loading, this allows you to transport up to eight more pallets, for example. This results in a substantial reduction in fuel consumption per pallet transported, in addition to the reduced traffic load.”
Seitz also presented a study conducted by the Technical University of Aachen, which confirms a 10 per cent reduction in CO2 emissions when using the Euro model over a standard semi.
“In the discussions, both the representatives of the European Commission and the members of the European Parliament characterised the extended trailer as a fantastic compromise … because it fulfils all the relevant requirements – sustainability, inter-modality, CO2 reduction and public acceptance,” Seitz concluded.