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Author Archives: klient

Categories New-posts

Measures at the German border

VCHD Cargo has a fleet of more than 160 vehicles, most of them used on international lines. Since Germany has recently included the Czech Republic in a list of high-risk countries due to the spread of new coronavirus (COVID 19) mutations and a high number of new cases, VCHD Cargo now has to face complications with cross border traffic. As of February 15, 2021, all border crossing points on the Czech-German border check driver’s authorisation for entry into the country and require recent coronavirus tests. No exemptions are made for professional international truck drivers. “This week, we expect widespread delays on our international cargo lines. The situation has further complicated the already unenviable job of our drivers who put their own health at risk to make sure our societies have the goods and products that they need,” says Ing. Petr Kozel, CEO and Chairman of VCHD Cargo a.s., explaining the consequences of the new measures implemented on the Czech-German border:

  • “There are practically no facilities (with the exception of Prague) that administer antigen tests in late evening or at night, which is a huge complication for our drivers.
  • With the exception of border crossings, all testing points require an appointment at a specific time. Unfortunately, delays on the road mean that we can schedule the precise time and place of a test appointment two days in advance for only a minority of our drivers.
  • There are 2-3 hour queues at testing points at border crossings. What this means for drivers is that they have to spend the majority of their compulsory break queuing to get a COVID-19 test.
  • Testing points at border crossings offer very limited restroom and bathroom facilities for drivers.
  • Although fast lanes for truck drivers with antigen tests were promised they are more often than not absent or do not work properly.”

The overall effect of the above challenges is a huge, often unpredictable delay. This is the biggest problem for us. We have specific loading and unloading time slots with our customers. Furthermore, the swapbody system works on the principle of meeting points halfway on the line where two trucks meet and easily swap their cargo. This saves both money and time but a delay of one line inevitably means delays further down the line. This in turn impacts the availability of both trucks and drivers, a profession that has been heavily exposed to the virus risk since the start of the pandemic and has been faced with increasing demands in terms of public health and special regime measures.

Categories New-posts

Do you test? We test!

Last year, the word “testing” made it on the list of the most used words in the world. Most of us have become casual experts on coronavirus testing and the relative advantages of nasopharyngeal , nasal and saliva tests have replaced football in our conversations with friends and family. Even our parents and grandparents have added “PCR” to their daily vocabulary. The latest twist in the saga has made antigen tests compulsory for Czech businesses as part of efforts to limit the spread of the diseases. However, the transport business has been tested for quite some time – our patients, resilience and our drivers’ psychological fortitude have been sorely tested for months.

 

Mental health is an integral part of the overall health of each and every one of us. For those who can come back home after work every afternoon and relax with their loved ones, this family time plays an important role in dealing with the stresses of the “covid age”. Unfortunately, long-haul truck drivers do not have this luxury. They spend days, often multiple days, on the road. They sleep in their truck’s cabin or in hotels and mobile phones and the Internet have become their only connection to the world. Sadly, news coverage they find online has long been laser focused on the same sad theme – record number of new cases, rising death tolls, lack of vaccines and overwhelmed hospitals. The only thing that seems to change is which indicator is the worst on any particular day. Not exactly the psychological boost one may need.

 

But our truck drivers cannot escape and switch off even when they come home. Three times a week, they have to give up several hours of their free time to get compulsory antigen tests required each time they cross the Czech-German border as most of our long-haul lines do. By the way, there is no guarantee yet that the compulsory testing imposed on all companies, including VCHD, will have the same validity and will be accepted for cross border traffic as testing done in certified centres with official certificates. Oh well, the truck driving profession is getting tougher and tougher all the time. And the covid era has been one hell of a stress test that has lasted for more than a year now. So if you meet a truck with the VCHD Cardo logo on the road, show some appreciation to the driver – with a smile, a hello, a small gesture of recognition. To let him know that his work makes a difference.

Categories New-posts, Press center

VCHD Cargo Approved as Air Cargo Carrier

The Czech transport company VCHD Cargo has become an approved air cargo carrier. The company provides shipping in the secured regime to airports in the Czech Republic as well as other European countries for customers with the regulated agent status. The company trained 30 employees in before introducing the new service.

 

An air cargo carrier is an entity that provides land cargo and mail services on behalf of regulated agents, known consignors or account consignors approved by the Civil Aviation Authority of the Czech Republic. Before approval, the carrier must go through a training and certification process required by the Authority and must ensure security throughout the entire transport process from or to airport terminals. “We have trained 20 drivers, dispatch staff and several office workers in order to provide this type of land transport that is subject to special rules and regulations,”Ing. Petr Kozel, Chairman of the VCHD Cargo a. s. Board of Directors, explains, adding: “this type of land transport comes with stringent security requirements on both the consignments as such and on operation and handling at airport terminals.” The new service is currently used primarily by automotive suppliers who urgently need to send their car parts to manufacturing plants. VCHD Cargo carries incoming air consignments from all parts of the world from the Václav Havel Airport Prague and provides carriage services to Czech exports to airports in Frankfurt, Nuremberg and several other destinations. VCHD Cargo has introduced the new service in order to offer fast transport options for customers without the complication of administrative formalities at EU airports.

Categories New-posts, Press center

VCHD Cargo records a modest growth in 2020

The transport company VCHD Cargo closed 2020 with positive results. Despite a huge drop in export volumes in the first and second quarter of last year, the company’s preliminary results indicate an overall 6.5% increase in turnover to CZK 777 mln. The growth was primarily driven by the German subsidiary VCHD Cargo GmbH. The company managed to maintain its investment strategy last year and even hired new employees. Employee health and IT were the key focus of the company’s efforts last year.

VCHD Cargo has announced its preliminary financial results for 2020, a year marked by unprecedented events on both the global and regional level. The VCHD Cargo group generated a turnover of CZK 777 mln, or 6.5% more than in the previous year. The Czech company VCHD Cargo a. s. achieved a steady financial result of CZK 729 mln (compared with CZK 725 mln in 2019) while the German-based branch VCHD Cargo GmbH increased its turnover from CZK 5 mln in 2019 to CZK 48 mln in 2020. VCHD Cargo Board Chairman Ing. Petr Kozel says: “The results reflect two facts – a drop due to a global pandemic, especially in the Czech market, in March and April 2020, followed by a massive revival in the autumn and at the end of the year. And secondly, we are now reaping the fruits of our efforts that initiated our business activity in Germany in 2019.” According to Petr Kozel, the loss of revenues in the Czech Republic during the first wave of the coronavirus epidemic was outweighed by an increase in transport volumes in the autumn and businesses’ efforts to get ready for brexit with many of them bringing in more stock in order to avoid complications expected to occur with a “hard brexit”. The company’s business in Germany focuses mainly on the domestic German market, which proved to be more stable last year and the company was, furthermore, able to attract new customers.”

VCHD Cargo continued to invest in its growth and development – specifically EUR 3,500,000. “Even during the difficult times of the Q1 marked by serious uncertainties about the future evolution of the new coronavirus pandemic we continued with our planned investments,” Petr Kozel explains and adds: “money was put into three major areas of our business – development and renovation of our branches, technology and renewal of our fleet and information technologies and, last but not least, protection of our people.” VCHD Cargo renovated its branch in Havlíčkův Brod and partly its branch in Kladno, purchased a total of 45 towing vehicles, trailers and cargo vehicles in a total value of CZK 77 mln and hired new people for middle management. Furthermore, the company was also one of the first to warn about the dangers of the pandemic as it was confronted with the reality of anti-coronavirus protection measures due to its regular cargo lines to Italy event before the fist cases of the disease appeared in the Czech Republic. “Since the start of the pandemic, we spent nearly CZK 400,000 on protective tools and items for our employees as well as disinfection and ionisation technologies for our vehicles.”

In 2021, VCHD Cargo plans ongoing additions to its team and want to attract new clients both in the Czech and German markets. The company wants to continue with major investments in new vehicles up to a total of CZK 100 mln and hopes to complete development projects in its branches in Havlíčkův Brod and Kladno. “Thanks to our wonderful team we were able to get through the difficult year 2020 with success and this year we want to focus on reinforcing our position of a reliable partner for our customers and a good employer for our staff,” Petr Kozel concludes.

Categories New-posts, Press center

Petra Růžičková to lead a new VCHD Cargo branch

The Czech transport company VCHD Cargo has founded a new branch – VCHD Cargo České Budějovice – with the experienced logistics specialist Petra Růžičková at the helm. In her new position, she will be responsible for the company’s activities in South Bohemia and beyond.

VCHD Cargo České Budějovice will be strategically focused on customers in the south of our country including many industrial and retail companies as well as customers in the cross-border regions of Austria and Germany. Ing. Petr Kozel, Chairman of the VCHD Cargo Board, explains: “By founding the new branch, we are strengthening our presence in a strategic part of the Czech Republic,” adding: “What we found in Petra Růžičková is an experienced branch manager with logistics know-how and detailed understanding of the region. Having the town of České Budějovice as our base also allows us to serve our current and potential customers in Austria and Bavaria. Our travel time to these customers is now one to two hours and we believe that once the pandemic is over personal meetings will once again be an integral part of relationship management.”

Born in České Budějovice, Petra Růžičková has worked in logistics for more than 16 years. She graduate from a business high school and earned an MBA in transport, communications and logistics. She has worked in logistics since 2004 when she got a job in the logistics department of Robert Bosch s.r.o. Between 2007 and 2010, she worked in DACHSER EST as sales manager and deputy head of branch. She has since progressed in her career serving as a manager in the transport company Unitrans Bohemia where she was responsible for strategic management and a team of nearly 100 employees. For the past eight years, she worked in DACHSER Czech Republic as a DIY segment solutions manager, shipping manager and branch manager.

Petra Růžičková speaks English and German and can communicate in Russia. In her free time, she likes to travel and enjoys sports.

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