Pro-Tech: Backhauls for Autoracks

Written by William C. Vantuono, Editor-in-Chief
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Pro-Tech Group, LLC has demonstrated what it’s describing as “an industry-first mobile container system that utilizes empty autoracks.”

The proprietary system, Pro-Tech says, utilizes deadheading autoracks in backhaul service “to carry freight in a cost-saving and more sustainable manner than other modes of transportation in supply chain management.” It recently completed pilot test runs transporting pallets of new wheel rims from California to an automobile assembly plant in Michigan. The company’s logistics system “is designed around efficiently loading Pro-Tech containers into empty deadheading autoracks for delivery to key hubs across the country. Normally,[an automobile parts supplier] would rely on trucks to ship parts, a method that can consume up to four times as much fuel when compared to rail transportation. Current estimates show [such] companies could save at least $4 million annually by using Pro-Tech containers.”

The steel-framed, hard-side containers provide “a pilfer-resistant and controlled shipping environment for two standard 48 x 40 pallets loaded with variety of parts, assemblies and other goods,” Pro-Tech notes. A bi-level autorack can be loaded with up to 18 Pro-Tech containers holding 36 pallets. The containers are collapsible, “which enables them to be easily stored or transported as stackable flats back to cargo pick-up points.”

“The Pro-Tech Container provides companies a sensible and cost-effective alternative to shipping over highways without disrupting their existing logistics and operations,” says Earle B. Higgins, Sr., Chairman and CEO of Pro-Tech Group. “By utilizing space in autoracks that otherwise would return empty to auto plants or other pick-up destinations, there is a twice-fold environmental benefit with these unique cargo containers. The Pro-Tech container system provides a whole new option for supply chain logistics, utilizing empty autoracks to help meet sustainability goals and help reduce shipping costs.” 

Founded in 1999, Pro-Tech Group, LLC is a supplier of transportation, warehousing and logistics solutions. The company has been providing a range of supply chain management services—transportation, warehousing and assembly—to a variety of global industries, including the automobile industry. The company, based in Southfield, Mich., recently received an investment from GameAbove Capital, a CapStone Holdings-held private venture fund focused on minority- and women-operated businesses engaged in sustainability-related products and services.

View a video demonstration of the system.

Categories: Class I, Freight, Intermodal, News Tags: ,