PCC Intermodal Inland Terminal Management System
Autostore delivers end-to-end, real-time terminal control and visibility...
The Kutno terminal estate covers 80,000m2 and operates 24/7. The long term plans are ambitious: PCC Intermodal intends to double annual throughput to around 200,000-250,000 TEU and triple container stack storage to over 4,000 TEU. With two extra tracks coming online in 2013 as well as a yard extension, one additional in/out gatehouse and foundations for RTGs, Kutno currently operates around 150 trains per month. The company runs regular intermodal services between main European marine ports and inland terminals in Poland (Upper Silesia – Gliwice; Lower Silesia - Brzeg Dolny; central Poland - Kutno); Germany (Berlin Region-Frankfurt Oder, Ruhr Area-Duisburg); and Moscow since December 2011. Kutno terminal is fed by Antwerp, Rotterdam, Bremerhaven, Hamburg, Gdynia and Gdansk. Expansion plans include enlarging the network to incorporate Kiev in Ukraine, Praha Koper in Slovenia and Trieste in Italy.
Says Wojciech Skrzypinski, Terminal Director at PCC Kutno: “When we switched over from our temporary terminal facilities to Kutno in 2011, we effectively doubled TEU throughput overnight and handled around 100,000 TEU in 2012. While we were able to generate container move information using existing in-house system (KROL), it became clear that the mix of digital and manual processes was too complex to cope effectively with the fast-growing volumes. We faced two options for moving the business forward: develop a bespoke, proprietary terminal operating system (TOS) within KROL - or invest in a specialist inland terminal management system (ITMS) with out-of-the-box functionality and sufficient flexibility built-in to allow for 20 per cent customisation.
“Inland terminal management is a specialised variant of container management at the portside and taking the partner route meant we needed a proven solution that could be up and running reliably in a fraction of the time it would take us to build a bespoke, in-house alternative. It was clear that Autostore packed all the capabilities we needed – not least in helping us deliver future growth plans that will see Kutno’s capacity triple by 2016,” adds Skrzypinski. “Autostore is a commercially proven ITMS that is crucial to the further evolution of our intermodal network; it gives us a proven multi-terminal management capability that we can grow into while giving us flexible, real-time control of cargo assets through the supply chain right to the point of delivery".
Developed by leading European supply chain and intermodal software developers Central Systems & Automation Ltd, Autostore is the UK’s dominant inland terminal management solution (ITMS) - in use with major operators like ABP at the Hams Hall UK inland hub near Birmingham and Stobart Park 3MG off the River Mersey. With major clients already running Autostore TOS and warehouse management variants across Finland, Denmark, Sweden, Lithuania, Latvia and Poland, it was clear that the Central Systems team had the regional knowledge and capabilities to deliver the project. PCC Intermodal opted for Autostore ITMS with multi-terminal management options and the core container terminal management system (CTMS) - plus the activity charging, rail planning, EDI and host interface modules and value added services package for container maintenance and repair.
24 years of award-winning excellence delivering strategic supply chain software and integration solutions... for potent inland terminal management that creates significant bottom line benefits.
Key operational areas covered by Autostore at Kutno Terminal include: gatehouse (in/out gate) processing; container history; pre-advice of incoming containers; import of discharge lists; yard management (using reach stackers); operational area management; graphical terminal planning; RF functionality for container handling equipment; graphical rail planning; user access control; container moves within the yard; zoning and input/output strategies; management reporting suite; EDI communications; and container enquiry facilities across all sites.
Once PCC Intermodal had opted for Autostore, Skrzypinski implemented a hybrid ITMS implementation on a 30-user licence that blends best manual practice with the streamlining effects of real-time digital yard visibility. User acceptance has been very positive - vehicle mounted radio data terminals (RDTs) minimise the exchange of data, simplify radio communications and clarify day-to-day management of operations. Autostore interfaces directly into PCC’s KROL system using SQL.
“Using Autostore, we now have the necessary operational slack to streamline storage, optimise train transshipment scheduling and loading plus cut the dwell times for containers on-site. We’ve reduced capacity from around 120% to 75% - too many containers on the yard was slowing us down - and we now have the agility to sweat our estate assets for speed, accuracy, improved throughput and more responsive customer service. This is key to our growth strategy for Kutno – strategic configuration and visibility across our operations that improves our ability to flex with peaks and troughs of demand”.
Concludes Wojciech Skrzypinski: "Kutno is the beginning of an ambitious development and modernisation programme for PCC Intermodal. It’s a strong and important link in both domestic and international supply chains that service the Baltic and Scandinavian north, the Russian east and the European south. Autostore is a commercially proven ITMS that is crucial to the further evolution of our intermodal network; it gives us a proven multi-terminal management capability that we can grow into while giving us flexible, real-time control of cargo assets through the supply chain right to the point of delivery".