Over the past year, Lynden Transport, Lynden Air Cargo, Alaska Marine Lines and Lynden International have replaced propane forklifts with energy efficient electric models. “Not only are the new lifts better for the environment, they perform better, too,” explains Charlie Mottern, Lynden Transport Director of Maintenance. “Independent drive motors allow both tires to spin together which makes them great in the snow.”
Lynden Transport has replaced 21 lifts so far and five more are being added this year. “This brings the total to 26 electric lifts of 45 dock lifts company wide,” Charlie says. The Tacoma location is next for electric conversion. All Lynden Transport locations in Alaska use electric lifts. Lynden International in Los Angeles has two lifts and Anchorage has three. Three more will be added this year to make the Lynden Air Cargo-Lynden International facility in Anchorage 100 percent electric.
Alaska Marine Lines purchased six new electrics in 2012 and bought six more this year. Twelve of the 18 lifts in the Container Freight Station (CFS) are now electric models, which emit 50 percent less carbon than propane lifts. With 46 electric lifts in operation by the end of 2013, savings will total $138,000 per year in energy costs while reducing 362 metric tons of CO2 going into the atmosphere.
The electric lifts are especially useful at Lynden Transport’s Prudhoe Bay Service Center where snow and ice are everyday factors. “The three new lifts definitely provide better traction,” says Service Center Manager John Jansen. “We no longer have to fight the icy ramps when moving freight.” In Anchorage, employees report positive changes ranging from cleaner warehouse floors to saving on electricity and heating bills due to a reduction in fan use. Electric lifts do not emit fumes.