GSC Logistics getting first electric drayage truck in Northern California

BYD terminal truckBYD terminal truck

GSC Logistics, a major trucking operator at the Port of Oakland, announced Wednesday that it’s on its way to becoming the first company in Northern California to use an electric drayage truck.

GSC said starting next month it will launch a three-year trial with a heavy-duty, all-electric truck.  The test is part of a statewide effort to determine the feasibility of zero-emission freight hauling.

“The purpose of the demo is to prove that battery-operated trucks can work in real world applications and port operations,” GSC CEO Scott Taylor said. “Depending on the efficiency, reliability, productivity and economics of battery-powered trucks, GSC would certainly entertain the possibility of integrating them into our fleet in the future.”

Taylor said his firm would consider purchasing additional rigs if the trial is successful.

California’s Air Resources Board initiated the zero-emission truck trial last year.  It’s sponsoring a test with five battery-powered rigs in Southern California concurrent with the Oakland study.  Shenzhen, China-based BYD Co. is manufacturing the trucks.

“We’re out to prove that zero-emission, battery-powered trucks can be used in heavy-duty applications,” said Andy Swanton of subsidiary BYD California.  He said the benefits of electric vs. diesel-powered trucks include: lower operating costs; no diesel exhaust; and quieter rides for drivers and neighborhoods near truck routes.

GSC Logistics said its truck will shuttle import containers from Port of Oakland marine terminals to a nearby yard.  The rig has a 100-mile battery range. The company said it would install a charging station to plug in the vehicle.