01.21.2020Consolidated Chassis Management in major program to upgrade equipment

Ensuring shippers have "chassis choice" for merchant haulage expected to be a prominent issue in the year ahead

Chris Dupin  Friday, January 17, 2020

Mike Wilson became CEO of Consolidated Chassis Management in April 2019 after a 26-year career with Hamburg Sud.

Consolidated Chassis Management (CCM), which manages chassis pools across the country, is upgrading the quality of chassis in its pool that serves the Southeast, including the ports of Savannah and Charleston.

Mike Wilson, president and CEO of CCM, said that by the end of 2021, chassis in its South Atlantic Consolidated Chassis Pool will be equipped with radial tires and LED lights, and by 2023 they will have antilock brakes.

The agreement to upgrade the chassis came after a proposal to create a new pool in the region fell apart because carriers were not comfortable with the cost structure of the pool.

The age of the fleet in the other five chassis pools CCM manages across the U.S. is similar, Wilson said, adding that CCM will be making recommendations for similar upgrades to equipment in those pools.

"When you upgrade to radials, you get better performance and lower cost over time," with the higher cost of the radial tires offset by lower maintenance cost.

Wilson became CEO of CCM in April 2019 after a 26-year career with Hamburg Sud, which Maersk acquired in 2018. He was retained to help with the integration of the two carriers and then left last spring to head CCM. However, his association with CCM goes back all the way to its formation in 2005, and he was chairman of the group for eight years.

His leadership in the industry was recognized last year when he was awarded Intermodal Association of North America's Silver Kingpin Award, and he has become a leading exponent for the benefits of fully interoperable, sometimes called "gray" chassis pools, like those that CCM manages. In an interoperable pool, several companies contribute equipment but share each other's equipment and hire a single manager.

The upgrades of equipment in the chassis pools will involve adding new lights, tires and brakes to current chassis, totally remanufacturing existing chassis and purchasing new equipment, though Wilson noted chassis imported from China have become more expensive because of 25% U.S. tariffs imposed on chassis made in China.

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