Bitumen Trailer Heat in Transit

  • 2019

  • Engineering

Designed By:

  • Speedie Contractors
  • Holmwood Highgate

Commissioned By:

Speedie Contractors

Designed In:


The Electric Heat-in-Transit Tanker revolutionised the design of Bitumen tankers. The new tanker improves efficiency in transit and reduces risk of exposure to hot bituminous product and potentially explosive stored product. It also improves access for operation, reduces on-road travel time and subsequent fatigue and challenged regulators to redefine safe transit requirements.

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  • The challenge was to reduce shift time of tanker operators, improve product heating and heat- retention methods, ensure safe transit and operations related to dangerous goods (hot bitumen), improve equipment interface and access by operators and maintainers,isolate workers from operations requiring proximity to the tanker, improve efficiency and productivity, and improve operational performance reporting. Essentially, the goal was to find a solution to change road tanker heating methods of bituminous products to a heat in- transit system that made sense and maintained compliance for road transport of dangerous goods in a heavily regulated industry.

  • The new bitumen tanker provides electrical heat-in-transit(to heat and circulate bitumen), with a diesel package burner that can be used to lift heat when onsite. The design includes interlocking rollover activation and impact sensors in case of collision. Analog display of operating features was replaced with digital monitors within view outside the tanker and i the cab. A rear ladder was replaced with a side ladder to isolate workers from valve and product exposure, reduce tanker weight and aid heat retention. A remote control has been designed to enable operators to monitor the receiving tank while controlling the pump.

  • The redesigned tanker has resulted in reduced risk of possible catastrophic events of a tanker explosion arising from overheating product, fumes and line blockages. Safer work has been provided through reduced risk of fatality, disability, and injury from bitumen burns, manual task risk exposure, and slips, trips, falls risk reduction. Operator fatigue risks have been reduced, and productivity improved with transit and heating time reduced 3 to 6 hrs per shift.Regulatory authorities were required to change interpretations of safe transit of these dangerous goods to approve this heat in transit system which has set a new precedent in the industry.

  • Valving can be operated from the ground and the delivery pipe was shortened to minimize the use of flush at an improved access height for the operator. Automation has been added for access to a pneumatic, telescopic release side ladder with automated activation of top of tanker guard rails.One fewer hatches has been used atop the tanker and they have been recessed to improve heat retention, reduce weight, and reduce slip-trip and fall risk among operators.