Logistics company CWT Commodities has its main UK site at Seaforth Docks in Liverpool, where it stores cocoa and coffee products arriving by ship from West Africa. After collecting the shipping containers from the quayside, CWT uses its forklift fleet to empty the contents and load them onto lorries to be delivered to some of the biggest blue-chip food and drink companies in the world.
Non-stop productivity with lithium-ion
New batteries power-up performance for logistics company at Liverpool Docks
What was the challenge?
24-hour operations required trucks with high availability and reliability.
Why this product(s)?
Electric EDiA and FB50N counterbalance trucks, with different forklift attachment options and a range of safety features.
What was the outcome?
Fast opportunity charging means trucks are ready when needed and CWT has been able to increase productivity.
Too much downtime
CWT had previously been using electric forklifts with wet-cell lead-acid batteries and had been experiencing multiple problems over the years.
After speaking with the local Mitsubishi Forklift Trucks distributor, Alex decided to upgrade the fleet and change to Li-ion. The technology is known for its super-fast, safe charging capabilities and reduced mains energy draw compared with conventional battery chargers. With Li-ion there is also no need to keep space-consuming spare batteries on site.
The lead-acid batteries we were using weren't charging properly, or they took a long time to charge overnight, and our productivity was suffering as a result.
Machines for every task
CWT Commodities ordered three 3.5-tonne electric EDiA EX FB35N 80-volt counterbalance trucks with li-ion batteries and selected additional features to support their operations.
These included a load weight indicator which displays a weight via the dashboard to prevent overloading, an auto-tilt mast to support safe box stacking, a rear-mounted blue spotlight which alerts nearby pedestrians to the forklift, and automatic LED headlights to illuminate the inside of containers.
CWT also ordered two 5-tonne electric FB50N counterbalance forklifts, each with high-lift 6.5-metre masts.
The 3.5-tonne Mitsubishi EDiA trucks are great for everyday tasks and have 4-wheel steering for a tight turning radius, which is ideal for working in busy warehouses. The larger models can be used with either a rotating clamp or with forks and sideshift, creating dual-purpose machines that provide more flexibility for operations.
Always ready to go
The ability to charge Li-ion batteries quickly means trucks are ready when they're needed, allowing CWT to hit more targets and vastly improve productivity. The company has even been able to save money by no longer relying on extra diesel trucks, which were previously used to supplement the fleet when the old batteries failed.
There is far less downtime now. We used to only be able to charge batteries at the end of every shift, but now we can put a truck on charge during our one-hour lunchbreak and get 90 percent battery power, which is great. The safety features on the trucks make things much easier for the operators because they can focus on the task and let the truck work automatically.
electric counterbalance forklift range
Engineered to deliver maximum performance, while keeping energy consumption to a minimum.