As I learned from my day as a passenger on an Atlas Oil Commercial fueling truck, fuel delivery is more complex than it looks. It’s not just about the driver and their vehicle. The coordinated operation requires a full team of highly trained logistics experts working behind the scenes to ensure safety standards, client expectations and efficiencies are met.
While truck driver Dennis' first step was checking in with dispatch and getting his paperwork for the day, mine was to chug enough coffee to keep my eyes open for our 5:45 a.m. start! From there, we headed for our first rack fill-up. We had planned to go to one specific rack when we left Atlas HQ, but the long line on site lead us to contact dispatch and ask them to direct us to the next best pricing source nearby. Luckily Atlas has specialists who monitor pricing and availability 24/7/365.
Once we arrived at the loading rack, a number of safety initiatives had to be fulfilled. The driver must check all of the tires, turn off and stow all electronics and then put on safety goggles and a hard hat to operate the rack. From there, we transported the fuel to our clients’ site. Each delivery site has slightly different operations and procedures, some require you to weigh your truck before and after (when filled an Atlas truck weighs a whopping 120,000 pounds!). Before we transfer the product, the Atlas driver has to check the level of fuel already in their reserve as well as test for any evidence of water, which can dilute fuel quality.
Fuel delivery is a pretty complex process. It’s a good thing that our drivers are highly trained and dedicated Atlas SEALs to ensure friendly and courteous service and an uncompromising focus on safety.