Based in Folkestone, Kent, Crosskeys Coaches has built its business by providing its own programme of UK and European tours, complemented by private hire and seasonal work for holiday tour operators. This includes excursions and local support for the Dover cruise ship terminal.

The company’s depot facilities include service workshops and a bulk diesel fuelling point, which has been upgraded with the installation of a Merridale Auditor GS integral pump and fuel management system. All fuelling transactions are now polled using GPRS telemetry for processing by the web-based Merridale FuelWorks service.

According to Crosskeys Coaches operations manager, Nigel Matcham, it’s quality and customer service that differentiates equipment suppliers today.

“We like the idea of fuel management as a service because it means that as the key equipment supplier, Merridale has a commercial interest in the on-going reliability of our depot facilities.”

Commenting on the upgrade he said. “We like the idea of fuel management as a service because it means that as the key equipment supplier, Merridale has a commercial interest in the on-going reliability of our depot facilities.”

“We are literally connected over the internet and the equipment status is an important part of the management reporting process. As well as the office computer, any other authorised personnel, can access the information, whenever necessary.

“Our depot fuelling equipment is crucial to the efficiency of our business. As a transport services provider, we depend on our reputation for reliability which has been built up over many years.

“If for any reason we cannot fuel our vehicles, this will impact our customer service, as well as the additional costs and inconvenience. This risk became clear as the support for our previous system was becoming increasingly patchy. On experiencing a particular failure, we found that we were pretty low on the suppliers’ service priorities. The software was ageing and we had other issues, such as the loss of data after power cuts, which had eroded our confidence in using the system for management reports.

“After the decision was made to upgrade, we visited a trade show to see what was on the market. As a result the Merridale FuelWorks service was selected together with a new pump and integral data processing/communications facilities. The package included 30 off vehicle proximity data tags covering each of the fleet coaches and the engineering support vehicle.

“The new system has been well received in operation. Should we have any queries, Merridale provides a telephone support service. Ongoing administration, such as updating the fleet database is very easy and the fuel usage reports are scheduled once a week.”

“We like the idea of fuel management as a service because it means that as the key equipment supplier, Merridale has a commercial interest in the on-going reliability of our depot facilities.”