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    UK Haulier Buys NatGas Vehicles


Online supermarket Ocado is phasing out diesel trucks in favour of the cleaner and quieter alternative.

by: William Powell

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UK Haulier Buys NatGas Vehicles

Online supermarket delivery company Ocado Group has ordered a further 30 gas-powered trucks for its distribution fleet, it said February 27. Ten have gone into service already, while the remaining 20 are due to follow throughout the year, doubling the number of trucks in the group’s heavy goods vehicle fleet running on gas. Collectively the company has clocked up some 4mn km and says its Iveco Stralis NP lorries can "comfortably" cover 530 km.

In January 2019, the online supermarket became the first UK retailer to self-fund the purchase of an onsite grid-connected gas refuelling station. Work is now underway on phase two.

The facility at Ocado Group’s Hatfield Customer Fulfilment Centre was designed and built by Gasrec – the UK’s largest supplier of gas to the road transport sector – and has supported the firm’s initial investment in 29 Iveco Stralis NP tractor units.

Ocado said: "As well as increasing the number of vehicles on the fleet we have also increased our blend of biomethane from renewable sources. We didn’t order any new diesel trucks in 2019.... We are fully confident we are heading in the right direction, hence the order for a further 30 Ivecos.”

Apart from emitting 99% fewer particulate emissions and 70% less nitrogen oxide than the latest diesel standard, natural gas powered vehicles are also, on average, 10 decibels quieter than diesel vehicles. The UK government has also contributed to the attractiveness by freezing the duty difference between the two fuels for some years. It does not yet include gas in its monthly statistics on road fuel prices.