Each business has been affected differently by the last 12-months. Some were fortunate enough to be able to weather the storm, while others were not so lucky.
Thankfully CNC Cartage was the former. Specialising in crane truck hire, flat top trucks, semi-trailers and regular crane hire to the building and construction industries, CNC Cartage operates in Brisbane, the Sunshine Coast, and Gold Coast.
We spoke to Chad Brown, owner of CNC Cartage and asked him about the history and current state of play, including how advanced technologies and existing partnership with Sci-Fleet Hino has given him confidence to grow his business, fleet, and helped keep them moving forward during the pandemic.
Tell us a little about your business operations and team.
CNC Cartage was established in 1997 by myself and Chelsea Brown. Starting with one truck, CNC now has 38 body trucks and 10 prime movers with a variety of trailer options.
Built on a reputation of outstanding customer service, reliability, and the use of late model vehicles, we employ more than 60 dedicated Queenslanders; all committed to providing customers with service they can count on.
How has business been since the beginning of COVID-19 in 2020? Did you need to make any major changes to how you operate?
Without a doubt, the world changed in early 2020. At the time, nobody knew what the pandemic would do to businesses. We reacted like most, fearing the worst, and cancelled several orders we had with Hino.
However, while many businesses suffered, the transportation, building and construction industries defied that trend. CNC Cartage was positioned perfectly to ride out the storm. We quickly reinstated our previous orders for new Hino trucks and have continued purchasing additional vehicles since. Will Gaulton - from Sci-Fleet Hino - was extremely helpful, ensuring we didn’t miss a beat. We’ve taken delivery of 12 new trucks since the beginning of the COVID outbreak!
We’ve read your interview with Diesel Magazine about the cameras installed in your trucks. What’s the weirdest or most interesting thing they’ve captured?
The cameras have captured countless situations over the years that’ve made us laugh or solved problems that otherwise would’ve remained a mystery. Just recently we were accused of forcing a vehicle off the road into a tree. Footage helped us prove the other vehicle stopped, then simply reversed off the road into a tree. Our truck - travelling at 16kph - had absolutely nothing to do with the incident. Supporting our driver’s version of events.
A more comical incident captured involved an electric scooter rider, travelling over 60kph, cutting corners and riding on the wrong side of the road. It was quite the spectacle. At one point, he followed our vehicle through an intersection, running into the back of the truck. Picking himself up, swearing and cursing, then proceeded to chase our driver and threaten him.
You have quite an impressive fleet. How many are Hino trucks and what models do you have?
We have 48 Hino vehicles in the fleet comprising of a variety of models including, 500 Series FG, GH, FM Wide Cab’s, 700 Series FS and SS and the all-new 700 Series SH.
Tell us more about the all-new Hino 700 Series and how it compares to the older models.
The new features of the 700 Series - over the previous model - are far superior. Driver comfort is second to none, and all the features and controls are easily accessible by the driver. Which is kind of a feature itself.
What is it about Hino that you like? What features appeal to you most?
The Hino is a great looking truck. In addition to its outward appearance, we love its ease of operation. The functionality and layout are intuitive and works well. While it has plenty of standard equipment and safety features, the driver can still set up and configure these to suit their own personal driving style.
Servicing is important, especially when operating a fleet. How is the service from Sci-Fleet? What is it about their service that has you coming back?
We have confidence in the Sci-Fleet team. They have great product knowledge in all departments. If we encounter a problem, they respond quickly. Night-time servicing is crucial to our business as we don’t have the luxury of down time during the workday. Their service department has always accommodated our needs, which is something we greatly appreciate.
If you could sum up your experience with Hino (purchasing, servicing, truck features, etc...), what would you say to someone looking to buy a Hino?
In the past 25 years we’ve dealt with only 2 Sci-Fleet representatives. Reg Taylor, and for the past 12 years, Will Gaulton. The relationship we have established has been mutually beneficial, and more recently - thanks to Will – we’ve been able to keep stock coming in to ensure we keep up with our client’s needs.
We can only speak about our relationship with Sci-Fleet Hino, but if anyone asked us, we’d tell them to work closely with their Hino dealer. No matter the type of business or industry you’re in, having a good relationship with your suppliers and partners will only benefit you further, and the team at Sci-Fleet are the perfect example. We have absolute confidence in their ability to meet our needs.
Wow! Another great example of the Hino QDR (Quality, Durability, and Reliability) ethos at work. CNC Cartage’s confidence in Sci-Fleet Hino comes from the reliability they’ve shown to get the job done. From being able to service their vehicles outside of business hours, to making sure they have the vehicles they need to meet the needs of their clients, when they need it.
If you’re looking to grow or update your fleet, you can view the wide range of Hino trucks here. Whether you need something that’s easy to drive (300 Series Full Automatic), a heavy-duty hauler (all-new 700 Series), or something a little more customised (Built to Go Range), Hino has something for everyone. Enquire today!