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Fleet pilots new service provider network

A new digital tool, Michelin's Maestro Marketplace allows fleets to identify service providers, view availability, and book appointments. It also gives smaller fleets access to a larger network of service providers.
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Downtime is a killer for any fleet operation. But a vehicle failure for South Carolina-based Moore & Balliew Oil Co.’s fleet, which hauls bulk fuel, diesel exhaust fluid, and lubricants, can be catastrophic.

Garth H. McDonald, fleet manager for Moore & Balliew, manages a fleet of 11 power units—tankers and box trucks—that haul products to Exxon Mobil sites throughout seven counties in South Carolina and to some distribution centers in North Carolina and Georgia. The trucks can travel 200-plus miles a day. Then, when they reach their destination, they sit idle for long periods, pumping out product.

“We use them and abuse them for sure,” McDonald said of the fleet’s equipment. “Those power units are constantly moving, and they are high idle time, so we have to keep everything maintained, otherwise you have a failure—and a failure in our industry causes a big mess.”

The fleet outsources maintenance for all its equipment. Whenever possible, McDonald prefers to utilize vendors within the local area, but the reality is that sometimes area service providers don’t have the additional resources to get trucks in as needed...

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