As our name suggests, at stg - the specialist transport group, we concentrate on solving transport problems, it's as simple as that.
Your project may be oversize, urgent or problematical in some other way - from just around the corner, more than often across the globe, inevitably to somewhere remote.
Over the years, we have been faced with every challenge imaginable - many unimaginable, some predictable, many unpredictable. Roads that appear on maps and yet don't seem to exist, bridges that have been washed away, weather conditions resembling the Antarctic, sand storms that penetrate every crevice.
Our reputation for solving transport problems is legendary. The wealth of experience, everyone's personal commitment and a flair for innovation, ensure that stg always offer the most economic and effective solution - time and time again.
Our very first, international special trailer movement took place in December 1972. We openly admit that we made every mistake in the book, taking three weeks to travel from the UK to Austria and back. Remarkably, the customer telephoned a few weeks later to ask if we would repeat the exercise, this time taking not quite so long! From then on, we've never looked back.
In a matter of months, Europe became second nature, quickly followed by forays behind the Iron Curtain - Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia and Romania featured regularly. Then, all of a sudden, the Middle East came on stream - Tehran, Baghdad and Beirut were added to a lengthening list of exotic destinations. In many cases, roads were nonexistent, documentation indecipherable and customs officers intransigent. When the far reaches of Russia were added to the mix, this experience became invaluable.
So, to the present day - Ulan Bator in Mongolia now features on the destination board, albeit by part road, part rail and part sea. Having said that, a recent project from Heathrow to Heathrow proved just as challenging as several thousand kilometres on unmade roads, where towns are few and far between.
If there has been a common thread over the last forty years, it's been the fact that the cargo is always special in some way - mostly oversize, sometimes extraordinarily valuable or fragile, frequently urgent. On each and every occasion, a special trailer has been needed - stg offer the very widest range of equipment throughout Europe, Scandinavia, Russia and beyond - all comply with both national and international regulations, many with the necessary permits already in place – to even the most remote destinations. The simple truth is that – if we can't do it, it probably can't be done.
Just as with special trailers, ships come in all shapes and sizes. From the smallest river barges, to the largest "round the world" oceanic vessels, stg has used them all. Without tied, agency agreements, acting in a strictly neutral capacity, stg has always been free to chose the right vessel, going in the right direction, at the right time.
This has always reaped dividends for customers - knowing that not only is the cargo being shipped as economically as possible, but also that it will arrive sooner, particularly important in the manufacturing industry. When coupled with the ability to deliver to any European port, the combination becomes unbeatable. In recent years Hamburg, Antwerp, Marseilles and Toulon have all featured prominently as stepping off ports.
However, it doesn't stop there - containers, flat racks, RoRo and break bulk are just a few of the options available. Whilst stg almost instinctively knows the optimum method and route, every option is explored in the search for the best possible solution. Moving up the spectrum, charter and heavy lift vessels add to the vast armada of ships available to the stg team.
Perhaps of equal importance, we never leave anything to chance. With most shipments, come rain or shine, there is an stg supervisor on the quay, just to make certain everything goes smoothly. Documentation is checked, and then double checked, well in advance.
Whether you have an aircraft test rig to go to Brisbane, a biofuel plant to be shipped from Mumbai or a mini-sub to go to Houston.
The team at stg look forward to the challenge.
Rigging, although predominately an American expression, embraces a whole range of services. Starting with machinery dismantling, stg have been responsible for single machines, all the way through to complete factories. It may be a cornflake production line from Denmark to Spain, or a bottling plant from Italy to Greece, stg have tackled them both.
Even when the machines have been dismantled, they will need preparing for shipment. Fluids may need draining, electrics sealed against water entry, vulnerable items packed for protection on route - just lifting to trailer/container, in a restricted area, may be a challenge in its own right. If there is a requirement not to disrupt existing, manufacturing operations, it adds a further dimension.
At the final destination, the reverse will apply - machines need to be discharged, reassembled, positioned and recommissioned. Almost inevitably, this has to be done in sequential order, building the line, as it progresses. Not infrequently, doors will need widening, walls may have to be removed. Very occasionally, the only way in is through the roof - as happened in Milan a short time ago.
Cranes play an important part in the process, supplemented by gantry systems, lift jacks, skates and an even wider range of specialist equipment. However, at the end of the day, it's the people that matter.
We have worked with some of the best and most highly trained technicians in the world.
stg are responsible throughout for everyones best performance.
Project Management means different things to different people. As far as stg is concerned, it means pulling the various strands together - transport, shipping and rigging. It is vital that there are no interface problems - cranes are in attendance, vehicles turn up on time and, most important of all, everyone knows what is expected of them.
Sometimes, other disciplines come into play. With high value cargo, a security escort may be needed. In city centres, night time delivery with street closures may be mandatory. On many sites, staff induction procedures are the order of the day.
In sensitive areas, security clearance may be necessary. Health and safety requirements, method statements, risk assessments and environmental considerations add a further dimension.
The Project Management role at stg is to anticipate every eventuality. Over the years, having performed literally thousands of projects successfully, we must have experienced every circumstance imaginable. Despite this, every now and then, something unexpected turns up - when it happens, stg rise to the occasion - it's what our reputation is based on.
It's why customers return, time and time again.
Drawing on stg's wealth of experience, consultancy services are a vital link in the chain. With any major project, the fundamental questions always remain the same.
Firstly, can it be done? Physically in terms of size, structurally in relation to weight ie bridge strengths. Site access and route surveys identify issues which, once addressed, head off disaster at some later date. Having cleared both these obstacles, will the authorities grant permission for it to happen - not necessarily always the case.
Secondly, what will it cost? The cheapest freight solution may not be the most economic, once everything has been taken into account. Peripheral expenses can escalate rapidly, putting any perceived savings into the shadows.
Thirdly, how long will it take? Time is money, cargo in transit is expensive. If one route or method saves time, without costing a premium, already a worthwhile benefit has been gained - well before the project gets underway.
Your project will be unique, it probably hasn't happened before and it's unlikely that it will ever happen again, at least in the same format - help to make certain that it goes right.
Just contact the stg team.
Whatever your transport problem - whether it is for something oversize, urgent or problematical in some other way - we are here to help. Sketch out the details below and the enquiry will be directed to the Associate in the best position to assist. He will be in touch directly.
Finally commitment, a word that is sometimes overplayed, but not at stg.If we say it is going to happen, provided it is within our control, we make certain that it does happen. If there is the slightest doubt, you will be the first to hear. More importantly, remedies will already be in place to minimise any impact.
It's simple – our reputation rests on it.