Same truck – Worlds apart7/3/18
Since 1993, Volvo FH has worked for businesses all over the world. It’s a truck that fits the needs for transporters in the extreme norths of Svalbard as well as the hot deserts of Saudi Arabia.
“I live with Volvo – for better or worse!” The words are spoken with a loving laughter. Knut Vebostad, Manager at Vebostad Transport AS, really cares about his six Volvo FH trucks. When he took the step from being a driver, to starting up a business his choice was easy. ”It was Volvo all the way.”
Knut Vebostad began his journey within transport up in the northern parts of Norway in Borkenes. “When you grow up in the area, you don’t think of the roads as icy or winding. You just learn to put on the snow chains when it’s needed. I was actually more scared my first times on the freeway around Oslo.”
Vebostad Transport specializes in asphalt and gravel transport. A lot heavy loads that really put the Volvo FH to the test. But the features of the truck comes through.
“The Tandem Axle lift is a must for us that work with construction transports. When driving empty loaded we save 10-12 percent in fuel. And reduce the tire wear”, says Knut Vebostad.
The I-Shift with crawler gears also helps with more power and performance when a steady low speed is preferred.
“And the Volvo Dynamic Steering. That’s something unique. It’s a whole new feeling”, says Knut Vebostad.
And if the roads of mainland Norway was not a big enough challenge – Vebostad Transport also does work in Svalbard – one of the northernmost inhabited places in the world. During summertime Vebostad has had one Volvo FH working with road construction transports on the islands up in the Arctic Ocean archipelago.
“We put the truck on a cargo ship. Then we fly there a few days later, says Knut Vebostad.
It’s a 2013 Volvo FH 540. We call it our “steel tractor”. It was the first truck we bought to the company.”
The hot climate of the Saudi Arabian deserts is on the opposite end of the climate-extremes. But the Volvo FH gets the job done there too, just as well. Sharbatly Fruit in Jeddah has traded fresh fruit and vegetables in the region for over 60 years. The company keeps a tight logistic chain to keep the produce refrigerated through the whole transportation.
“Basically, the fruit does not even feel the warm climate of Saudi Arabia. Except when it is delivered out to the market”, says Hashim M Sharbatly, Deputy General Manager at Sharbatly Fruit.
To accomplish that unbroken logistic chain the company must be able to rely on the truck. For the transport from Jeddah to Dammam the Volvo FH has to cross to the whole kingdom – through the great desert.
“Back and forth it’s more than 2 800 kilometers”, says driver Reynaldo Garcia.
The deserts can be very unforgiving with temperatures reaching over 50 degrees Celsius and sandstorms that put the truck to test. But Volvo FH stands strong.
“We have trucks doing one million kilometers without any changes of parts. That includes the clutch and the brakes. So quality wise we are happy”, says Daanie Zeyman who manages Sharbatly’s truck workshop.
And as great as Volvo FH’s capacity is to get the job done all over the world – just as great is the appreciation of the truck from the users.
“The truck can always get better. But there’s no doubt for me that the Volvo FH is the best available. We drive the best truck!” says Knut Vebostad.
“It’s comfortable. Very fast and very strong. I can say it’s the most perfect truck in the world”, says Reynaldo Garcia.