MedTrans utilizing fully electric semitruck to deliver products to Southern California hospitals

Pilot EV program with Volvo Trucks North America part of Medline’s commitment to reducing environmental impact

By Medline Newsroom Staff | August 25, 2021

As part of a pilot program with Volvo Trucks started in 2019, Medline’s private truck fleet, MedTrans, is utilizing a fully electric semitruck to make deliveries to hospital systems in Southern California. The Volvo VNR Electric truck was developed as part of the Volvo LIGHTS (Low Impact Green Heavy Transport Solutions) project, a collaboration between Volvo Trucks and 12 other organizations to develop a blueprint to successfully introduce battery-electric trucks and equipment into the market at scale.

MedTrans has been working with Volvo Trucks for the past two years on its VNR Electric Class 8 heavy-duty truck. Most recently, MedTrans began utilizing the VNR Electric as one of five pilot vehicles to make regular product deliveries. Through the pilot, MedTrans and Volvo Trucks closely monitor truck diagnostics and operating metrics, including battery life, driving range and charge station requirements. MedTrans then regularly provides operating data back to Volvo Trucks with the goal of making these trucks as efficient, effective and viable as possible.

“Volvo Trucks is proud to partner with Medline and is focused on providing the company with sustainable transport solutions that will streamline healthcare supply chains, which have been more critical than ever before,” said Volvo Trucks North America President Peter Voorhoeve. “With the intensified urgency in medical logistics over the past year and a half, the expertise of Volvo Trucks’ certified technicians now in our dealerships who are able to support the Volvo VNR Electric will help increase uptime as they keep these critical supply lines moving.”

The effort is also part of MedTrans’ decades-long commitment to minimizing the impact of its deliveries on the environment.

“This electric truck initiative is exciting, important and reflects MedTrans’ ongoing efforts to improve the efficiency of our fleet operations, with the ultimate goal of protecting the environment and helping our partners to do the same,” said Medline Outbound Vice President of Transportation Jeff Brennan.

MedTrans was one of the first transportation fleets to fully transition to automatic transmissions to reduce fuel consumption. In addition to participating in the Volvo Trucks pilot program, MedTrans regularly utilizes all available technologies and optimal operating practices to minimize the number of deliveries, miles driven and fuel use. Since Medline has its own private truck fleet and drivers, the company can control and impact the type of equipment it uses, operating performance, and driver team engagement and training related to safe and efficient driving practices. Other ongoing initiatives aimed at reducing MedTrans’ carbon footprint, include:

    • Utilizing a Dynamic Route Planning system to reduce miles and improve trailer utilization.
    • Purchasing the most efficient diesel heavy-duty trucks with near-zero emissions.
    • Maintaining a truck fleet of more than 1,300 units with an average age of four years.
    • Limiting truck speed to 65 miles per hour to maximize fuel use and improve safety.
    • Incentivizing all drivers to avoid hard stops, heavy acceleration, high speeds and long periods of idling – all to reduce emissions and environmental impact.
    • Serving as an Environmental Protection Agency SmartWay® Transport partner for the past 10 years. Through the program, MedTrans documents, tracks and shares information on fuel use and freight emissions, benchmarking the company’s metrics against other carriers, and ultimately, improving emissions and lowering environmental impact.

“As electric vehicle technology evolves to provide greater driving range, our plans include expansion of these trucks as an integral part of our delivery operations well into the future,” said Brennan.

Learn more about Medline’s sustainability efforts

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Medline Newsroom Staff

Medline Newsroom Staff

Medline's newsroom staff researches and reports on the latest news and trends in healthcare.

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