Containers to Curtain Carriers 2.0




CONGRATULATIONS to all those transport companies who want to reduce turnaround times at depots for loading and unloading.

We have launched the gold standard for transporting palletized cargo especially in the FMCG sector.

Conventionally, the palletizedgoods are transported in heavy modified shipping containers in Pakistan while the rest of the world has moved on to lighter, efficient and aesthetically pleasing “Curtain Sider” trailers. 

There is a normal perception of a fabric/curtain to be weak and prone to damage. How come it could serve as a container when installed over a trailer? Also the fleet owner is many a times concerned about the theftof cargo as the cargo seems easily accessible.

However, this is not the case.

Because the fabric comes in various compositions and mesh interweaved within. This type of fabric has extreme fatigue strength and cannot be vandalized easily.

AUTOCOM has recently developed a fleet of curtain trailers that will soon be witnessed on roads in Pakistan and abroad. It is a fully TIR compliant curtain trailer and specifically made for export of palletized cargo. The fabric of roof is tested against the EN ISO 1421 -1 standard for breaking strength and against DIN 53 363 for tear strength. Here are some results for the fabric installed on Roof tested against the standards. Also the side curtain fabric is much more in strength than that of a roof. Its breaking or Warp strength is 4000 N/5cm whereas for Roof it is 2500 N/5cm.

Also, for the fact the type of trailer could be opened from right side, top, left side and from back doors, making it more friendly for loading and unloading. Also you do not need loading and unloading docks for offloading the cargo. With the help of a fork lifter you can easily unload the trailer at your warehouse or wherever needed.

There are some precautionary measures to unlocking it, sliding the curtain, locking it at an interim position, offloading the cargo and locking it back. These handling guidelines are shown step by step in the image. For unloading of cargo from sides, there is a ratchet tensioner that needs to be opened via pulling and sliding the curtain sideways.

Also in order to protect the profiles on the roof upon which curtains are mounted, it is strongly recommended not to:

  1. Allow a person walking on the roof of the trailer, unlike metal superstructure, where there are walk ways for top loading especially in fuel tankers.
  2. Allow heavy loads to rest on the trailer top at specific unit area.
  3. Allow dew or snow to be accumulated on the curtains roof top.
  4. Allow unlocking the roof top, when some external fluid is resting on the top of the trailer.
  5. Harsh turning of trailers with back doors open.
  6. Harsh turning of trailer with back doors and roof top unlocked.

You don’t need to invest in a new trailer as AUTOCOM is offering to convert your existing flat bed semi-trailer to curtain siders by mouting the “montage”.  Following are some of the uses of a curtain truck/trailer.

Top Uses of a Curtain Side Truck

  1. Shipping perishable goods
  2. Transporting fragile items
  3. Shipping large or bulky items
  4. Shipping heavy machinery
  5. Shipping oversized items

Since it is a light weight trailer (45-foot curtain trailer can weigh as low as 7 tons while a 45’ container box trailer would weigh around 10 tons), you can carry more pay load instead of dead weight.

AUTOCOM’s Curtain Sider Trailers ensure the compliance on TIR with the following points:

  1. The curtain, doors and all the other constituent parts of the load compartment on AUTOCOM’s trailer are assembled in such a way that they cannot be opened or closed without leaving obvious trace.  This is the primary rule of the TIR compliance.
  2. The curtain is designed in such a way that it overlaps the solid parts at the top of AUTOCOM’s trailer by at least ¼ of the actual distance between the rollers.
  3. The curtain guidance and other movable parts of the system are assembled in such a way that no movable part can be opened or closed from the outside without leaving obvious traces. The curtain guidance and other movable parts are assembled in such a way on your trailer that it is impossible to gain access to the load compartment without leaving obvious traces.
  4. The horizontal distance between the rings, used for customs purposes, on the solid parts of our trailer will not exceed 200 mm as required in the TIR regulation.
  5. The distance between the tensioning straps on our trailer will not exceed 600 mm as required in TIR regulation.
  6. The fastenings used to secure the sheets to the solid parts of the vehicle will fulfil the requirements of TIR as the kit is provided with the steel wire rope of one piece of at least 3 mm diameter.

The launch of AUTOCOM Curtain Sider isn’t only our organization’s success milestone, but it will prove to be a game changer in the logistics landscape of our country.  We are confident that the fleet operators will welcome this product as, with reduced turnaround times, it will help them reduce the number of vehicles required to complete the job.

AUTOCOM thrives on innovation.  We are indebted to our customers and business partners who keep pushing the boundaries of “conventionallogistics.”  We practice “Change for Good” that makes us advocates of innovation.We cannot complain of staying back and experiencing the “Kodak moment”. As the saying goes:

“When the window of opportunity appears, do not pull down the ‘curtain’.”

This exclusive article has been published in Automark Magazine’s July-2024 printed/digital edition.

Written by Sumaiyah Murtaza