Categories New-posts, Press center

VCHD Cargo invests in quality and safe technology.

Last year, the international transport company VCHD Cargo welcomed about a hundred new vehicles to its fleet, thereby reducing the average age of its vehicle fleet in the Czech Republic to 2.3 years. This significant investment also led to a notable decrease in the costs of maintenance and vehicle service. With an investment of 180 million Czech crowns in the renewal of towing and trailing vehicles, the company has strengthened the conditions for the safe driving of its drivers and increased their comfort at work.

VCHD Cargo, a transport company focused on international line haulage, has maintained its fleet of commercial vehicles at an average age of approximately 3.5 years for many years. However, last year it massively invested in the renewal of the park – acquiring 56 new towing motor vehicles and 45 trailing vehicles, including interchangeable superstructures, thus reducing the average age of the fleet to a record 2.3 years. “This means we have the most modern vehicles on European roads,” states Ing Petr Kozel, CEO and Chairman of the Board of VCHD Cargo a.s., adding, “but more importantly, we can offer our customers even more reliable services. Also, thanks to the many safety features in the most modern equipment of the vehicles and regular training of our drivers, we contribute to higher safety of operations on European roads.”

Currently, VCHD Cargo has 200 vehicles in its fleet, including so-called frigo vehicles (refrigerated trailers) for transporting goods in a controlled temperature regime or frozen products. All vehicles meet the highest Euro VI emission standard and are equipped for the transport of dangerous goods. “We decided to invest in new technology despite the economic downturn last year. This was made possible by our long-term strategy and the stable results of our family company,” adds Petr Kozel.

The new additions to VCHD Cargo are from various brands, and VCHD Cargo thus celebrated four hundred milestones. Because the fleet management has been dedicated since its founding, it could confidently state that last year it included vehicles from four brands – Scania, MAN, Mercedes, and Volvo in the fleet. “All vehicles are characterized by good equipment and a comfortable cabin, thus creating the best conditions for safe and economical driving, which we have long motivated our drivers to achieve,” concludes Petr Kozel.

Categories New-posts

ADR transport – processes and people are key

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When setting up a quality supply chain for shipments of hazardous goods, safety is the top priority. It’s a demanding, never-ending process that requires strict adherence to international regulations and agreements, and experienced drivers.

Hazardous goods are classified under the ADR agreement and can include various substances and materials, from chemicals and fuels to explosives. This also includes common consumer products like cosmetics, some food items, laundry detergents, paints, etc., essentially any products that due to their properties can pose a risk to health, safety, property, and the environment during transport.

All personnel handling hazardous goods must be properly instructed and trained. Drivers must complete accredited training. This varies depending on the type of transport (transport of hazardous goods in packages, in bulk, and in tankers) and the classification of the hazardous goods. Upon successful completion, they receive an ADR driver training certificate valid for 5 years. In the final year of its validity, the driver must attend a two-day refresher course to extend its validity. “We devote maximum effort to educating our drivers, even beyond mandatory training,” clarifies Ing. Petr Kozel, CEO and Chairman of the Board of VCHD Cargo a.s., adding, “a great deal of responsibility lies on them, as they are the last link before the actual transport and must check numerous technical and administrative details.” In the logistics of hazardous materials, the carrier indeed bears the greatest responsibility. A driver is authorized to load goods defined in the ADR agreement only into a suitable vehicle, properly equipped with prescribed equipment and documents, and marked with safety labels. They must oversee proper loading, unloading, securing, and handling of hazardous goods, check the integrity of packaging, and are responsible for correctly filled accompanying documents of the transported cargo. “Due to the shortage of qualified professional drivers in the labor market, we make every effort to ensure our drivers are satisfied, and we have established an onboarding system for newcomers who often don’t come from driving schools properly prepared for real practice,” states Petr Kozel.

The transportation, handling, and storage of chemical and hazardous substances also require traceability of vehicles transporting the cargo, movement of logistics units or specific products, boxes or packaging, their receipt, consumption, or de-stocking, and the history of responsible workers who handled these substances. VCHD Cargo uses sophisticated IT systems for these purposes, which extend into the personnel aspect and preemptively notify the need to renew ADR exams for each specific driver.

The company also uses IT for setting routes of regular line connections, which it specializes in, as ADR transportations have their specifics – routes must be diverted, for example, from tunnels or water sources.

A special chapter in the transportation of hazardous goods are the vehicles themselves. VCHD Cargo carries out full-load shipments of goods of classes 2–6 and 8–9 according to the ADR classification and uses its entire fleet for these orders, including so-called frigo trailers, which additionally allow the transport of hazardous substances in a controlled temperature regime. All 330 tractors and trailers are equipped for ADR goods transport, and all vehicles comply with the highest emission standard EUR VI.

According to VCHD Cargo, what are the most common mistakes? “In ADR transportations, we often struggle with poor or insufficient packaging of dangerous products and missing or incomplete documentation,” states Petr Kozel, adding, “therefore, we try to establish the right processes with our customers from the beginning of our cooperation to avoid such unexpected situations. Setting the right processes is the alpha and omega of timely and safe delivery in ADR transportations.”


Categories New-posts

This year we celebrate three times a hundred!

The year 2023 was a landmark for VCHD Cargo a.s., marked by the “century” milestone, achieved three times over. Our fleet of modern trucks reached three significant milestones – three renowned manufacturers have delivered the 100th vehicle of their brand to us.

Since the beginning of our history to this day, our customers and we have seen 100 MAN trucks, 100 Scania, and 100 Volvo trucks in service. Each brand has its unique strengths – Volvo is very reliable, and like Scania, it is known for its low fuel consumption, while MAN is appreciated for its spacious cabin. The average age of our trucks is three years, and we retire them when they reach approximately 750,000 to one million kilometers on the odometer. They are our working tool, our business card, and a second home for our drivers. We maintain them in excellent technical condition to enable us to provide the highest quality of transportation to our customers. So, let’s toast three times to the journey towards the next hundred.

Categories New-posts

A Few Tips for Safe Winter Driving

In recent weeks, we have begun to face the challenges of cold weather – ice, snowdrifts, heavy snowfall – in short, winter is here. How can you best prepare for winter driving? We bring you a few tips for safe driving during the winter months.

  1. At the beginning of winter, make sure your vehicle is in good technical condition, or have it checked at a service station. Quality winter tires with a deep tread are a must. Always carry practical equipment for emergencies, such as a snow shovel, a bag of sand, jumper cables, snow chains, as well as enough drinks, emergency non-perishable food, and a blanket. Don’t forget to have enough fuel in the tank.
  2. Maintain good visibility. Your car should be clean, all snow removed, ice scraped off, and that goes for the entire surface of the vehicle. Don’t forget about frozen lights and snow-covered license plates. Adjust the driver’s seat properly – when you press the pedal to the max, your knees should not be fully extended. Before each drive, check the functionality of the headlights.
  3. Know your car and learn to recognize the risks of different surfaces – for example, slush behaves similarly to water, freshly fallen snow has more grip than packed snow, and ice-covered snow logically behaves like ice. You must always be aware that the car behaves differently and has different traction than on a dry road. Therefore, much more caution and foresight is needed.
  4. Remember the main principles of snow driving using the engine: When starting on a slippery surface, the wheels may spin. Try starting in second gear and slowly releasing the clutch while gently adding gas. Drive smoothly in a higher gear uphill, you need speed and momentum, and if possible, do not stop on the hill. On narrow roads, the priority is for those going uphill. Respect that. If you stop, you probably won’t be able to start again without all-wheel drive, leaving no option but to reverse down to a flat area and try again. Or use snow chains. Conversely, when driving downhill in snowy terrain, choose the lowest gear and brake with the engine.
  5. Slow down before a turn and shift to a low gear, then carefully turn. This minimizes the risk of skidding. If there are tracks in the snow, stay in them, as skidding is also a risk when crossing them.
  6. Invest in your own experience – sign up for a skid school or a specialized safe driving course and practice driving in dangerous terrain under safe conditions. Or at least try out your car’s behavior on an empty snow-covered area, like a parking lot.
  7. Get into the car rested, focus fully on driving, and anticipate not only the characteristics of the surface but also other drivers, who are often less experienced than you.

Categories New-posts, Press center

VCHD Cargo for a good cause

Our company VCHD Cargo has been supporting public benefit activities for many years. This year we supported the non-profit organization Drivers Helping Children, which is dedicated to children from an orphanage. In addition, we also continued our cooperation with the Czech SAR Team, an organization of volunteer rescue workers, and financed the purchase of a trailer for transportation of injured people.

The cooperation between VCHD Cargo and the Czech SAR Team, the largest Search & Rescue organisation in the country, was initiated by an employee who is a member of the organisation. From 2021, VCHD Cargo supports the activities of these volunteer rescuers, who, as one of the other components of the integrated rescue system, assist in the search for people in inaccessible terrain and urban areas. “We see meaning in the work of voluntary rescuers and appreciate their commitment, which they all do outside their profession,” says Ing. Petr Kozel, CEO and Chairman of the Board of VCHD Cargo a.s., and adds, “we always contribute to specific equipment that makes their work easier.” This year, the company supported the purchase of trailer equipment that enables the safe transport of injured or disabled people from difficult terrain.

This year, VCHD Cargo also directed its support towards disadvantaged children. It has started cooperation with „Řidiči pomáhající dětem”(Drivers helping children), a non-profit organisation made up mostly of professional truck drivers, which focuses on supporting children from orphanages. Every year, the drivers organize „Kamion Fest”(Truck fest) and other cultural, social or sporting events, the proceeds of which go to the Nová Ves orphanage near Chotěbor. “We appreciate the activity that has emerged from truck drivers across the country, which serves a good cause – supporting children who are not lucky enough to grow up in a family environment,” says Petr Kozel, adding, “We like to give our support to the most vulnerable in our society.”