Home Sweet Home Tank Truck Industry Gets Comfortable with Web

Aug. 1, 2001
TANK TRUCK industry companies that serve the residential and commercial delivery market continue to make a home for themselves on the Internet. As they

TANK TRUCK industry companies that serve the residential and commercial delivery market continue to make a home for themselves on the Internet. As they get comfortable with the Web, they are learning that the medium works well for displaying all kinds of information, from diagrams for vehicle specifications to pages for presenting company histories.

With e-mail available on the sites, contact with the companies is quick and easy. The e-mail access also makes it possible for visitors to send queries to the companies via posted forms. Many suppliers are making plans to provide online catalogs with ordering capability. Others already have catalogs that are presented in a print-ready format.

As more and more customers adapt to Internet usage, those companies that have sites with user-friendly access will be ready to handle the traffic. Many companies are continuing to update their sites with the latest technology.

Following are more samples of how companies are using the Internet to market their products. There is a variety of approaches, including an opportunity for a little humor mixed in with sales promotions.



An extensive petroleum truck specification discussion is provided on the web site of Boston Steel & Manufacturing Company, Malden, Massachusetts, a company in business since 1915. Buttons at the top of the pages lead to tank styles and tank construction, the latter page containing specifications.

Specifications for fuel tankwagons are displayed in sections titled heads and baffles, tank shells, tank bottom, mounting sub-frame, top overturn rail, manhole and vents, and fenders. Also lights and wiring, hardware, ladder, external tank, bumper, and tank tie downs. Each title has in-depth information about the subjects.

A photograph of a tank under construction depicts procedures in the construction process page. Other construction information accompanies the photograph. Among the subjects discussed are side-access safety, the canbox, special mounting, deep scoop on baffles and heads, and strength.

The company manufactures its own single wrap, twin reel system, and three-wrap reels. The products are described on a page reached by clicking on the reels button.

Another page presents custom options offered by the company, including front-mounted reels, split compartments for different products, multi-speed dual reels/pumps for commercial fills, and other configurations.

All tanks are available with various equipment, including emergency check valves, power take-off systems tied in with brake and/or reel brake, and rotary, centrifugal, and positive displacement pumps from manufacturers. Electric or air-powered rewind hose reels can be ordered. Top or bottom-loading systems are available.

Boston Steel's production and service facilities are Department of Transportation-registered and American Society of Mechanical Engineers U- and National Board R-stamp-certified. The company maintains its own fleet service and repair facility adjacent to the plant in Malden and offers parts sales, service, repair work, and pressure/vacuum testing on fuel oil and gasoline tanks.

For customer convenience, the site has an e-mail form that can be used to submit queries for specific trucks and components. Truck size, style, and desired delivery date can be selected.



Hutchinson Industries, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, has taken a moment to add a humorous note to its web site. On the company's history page, a photo of a Y2K-compliant tanker is pictured. It's a photograph of a burro with a small fuel tank strapped across its back.

However, the site is filled with serious information about the company and the custom services it provides in fabricating aluminum tankwagons for petroleum transportation.

Among the photographs of vehicles offered are aviation refuelers, tankwagons, tank trailers, and fire trucks. Information about the parts department also is accessible, and an online parts section is on the drawing board.

If a company requires B-620 tank inspections as required in the United States and Canada, Hutchinson will perform them at the plant or travel to the customer's site.

Hutchinson publishes a quarterly newsletter with news about the tank industry. The web site offers an e-mail form to subscribe.

An extensive contact page is available with names, telephone numbers, and e-mail addresses listed.



Kovatch Mobile Equipment manufactures specialty vehicles for petroleum transport, including commercial fuel trucks and waste oil trucks. The Nesquehoning, Pennsylvania, company discusses all of its services on its web site.

Another significant part of KME's business is airport ground service equipment including aircraft refuelers and airport snow plows and pusher chassis for brooms, plows, and brushes.

KME Fuel Transport, the petroleum truck division, is featured on the site. Discussed are the company's aluminum, mild steel, and stainless steel tanks.

Specific information is available about bolt-on tanks, plumbing, meters, pumps, bottom-loading and vapor recovery equipment, and the chassis.



Base Engineering of Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada, features the company's remote-control devices for bobtail and tank trailer vehicles.

Photographs of the products, along with a summarization of the product features, are offered on the company's site.

On a page entitled, Bulletin Board and Distributor Network, a list of the company's distributors is provided. Soon to be added is a page that will contain installation tips for the products.



Passive line break detectors and radio controls are the topic of discussion on the DJT Products Inc site. The company has offices in Godfrey, Illinois, and Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Web pages include drawings of the systems used on propane tank trailers and bobtails. The pages have in-depth descriptions of the products' capabilities and operation.

There also is a section for the company's accessories and option equipment.

Forms are posted for a prospective customer to receive an estimate for the specific product that is needed.



Many sites make use of Adobe Acrobat, but McTier supply Company, Lake Forest, Illinois, displays all its information in the plug-in that displays files in portable document format (PDF). That means that the pages load and print quickly, and the photographs, drawings, and charts are especially vivid.

The company's remote shutoff equipment is discussed in the valves section. Diagrams of the equipment are pictured and key features are presented. Technical information also can be accessed.

Brochures displaying the many products offered by McTier are available through the site. A credit application is posted, and customers with password access can review product specials that are offered.

About the Author

Mary Davis