The transport company founded by René Reinert in 1990 in Schleife has grown in almost three decades to become a truly well-known five-star full service provider. "We are a modern haulage company and serve a wide range of sectors, such as full and part truck load shipping, jumbo shipments, refrigerated, silo and bulk goods shipments. Our fleet consists of almost 750 vehicles," says Peter Ring, Operations Manager at the headquarters in Schleife/OT Mulkwitz. REINERT Logistics currently employs 1,200 people at nine sites and branches in Germany and one in neighbouring Poland. "We soon outgrew our first company headquarters in Trebendorf. In search of larger premises nearby, René Reinert found this site and bought it." Trebendorf was nevertheless kept and there the enterprising owner and managing director founded the Reinert Ranch. The place is really busy – saloon and steakhouse, holiday apartments, holiday camp for kids, fun and adventure, quad or buggy tours through the countryside of Upper Lusatia. René Reinert even allows rides in the race truck and original US truck, even balloon rides are part of the extensive event programme.
From time to time, the land in Upper Lusatia has to give way to open-cast lignite mining, as it is excavated. "When it became clear in 2016 that we could stay in our headquarters in the forest near Mulkwitz, our long-cherished desire for our own commercial vehicle wash became so strong that it finally meant: All right, now we'll do it," the head of operations remembers exactly. The responsible persons then started their search, evaluated the market of car wash manufacturers and compared them with their own ideas and requirements. Finally, the then project manager – who now works on the Reinert Ranch – contacted WashTec, the innovative world market leader for vehicle washing systems. "We enquired very carefully as to what is technically possible in order to wash our vehicles easily, quickly and well with one system. And naturally we wanted to know which commercial vehicle washes are offered with which equipment features. We also researched where our vehicle fleet washes in order to best meet operational requirements. It should be a system that washes all by itself and does not have to be looked after 24 hours a day." Taking all factors into account, REINERT Logistics finally opted for the MaxiWash Vario, a robust, extremely reliable solution made by WashTec that washes thoroughly, efficiently and cost-effectively in less than seven minutes, achieving two complete passes. A gantry that can wash commercial vehicles up to 4.20 metres high and 2.90 metres wide. The double-bearing-mounted side brushes, which move in anti-tilt rails, ensure uniform contact pressure over the entire length of the side brushes. This produces significantly better cleaning results. The Standard all-round high-pressure arch installed on the gantry supports the washing process in hard-to-reach areas of commercial vehicles as does the upgrade with the mirror programme.
Exactly where today the REINERT Logistics fleet is washed by WashTec technology in a bright and friendly lightweight construction building, there used to be an old rival gantry that only operated in summer. "It was always a lot of trouble in spring and meant a lot of effort to make it ready for use again. Residual water, which had not been blown out before the winter break, destroyed the gantry's piping system, so that spare parts always had to be procured and installed in order to be able to wash." The open-air facility finally rusted so much that it failed to wash properly. Frost and snow should not be able to harm a new system. So we had it demolished and built a heated wash bay so that we could also wash in winter," reports Peter Ring and adds: "In snow and ice we still close the bay doors to prevent a driver from even thinking about washing at all. Because we will survive the few days of heavy frost."
Prospective truck pilots – as all professional drivers at Reinert Logistics have long been called – clean the wash bay and the gantry during their training. "At the beginning of the month, they are assigned the task of cleaning the vehicle wash. Two young men then go into the bay with the high-pressure cleaner and really 'get stuck in'. The bay is even cleaned once a week. Otherwise it wouldn't look as good as it does today." During the week, the facility hardly washes at all, as most of the transport fleet is out on the road. Friday afternoon and on Saturday the picture changes. The "Clean Warrior" works non-stop. "We can manage four to five vehicles an hour. There's no prewashing, the tyres just get a quick brush over," Peter Ring makes clear. The MaxiWash Vario primarily washes commercial vehicles with closed, smooth surfaces. Silo vehicles can also enter the bay under the gantry. However, only if the vehicle wash attendant is on site. He is the man who drives the vehicles from their parking place to the wash facility, starts the wash programme and drives each truck back to its parking place. "He comes on Fridays and Saturdays and takes care of the wash facility. He has access to the key cabinet and carries the wash card with him. On a weekend he manages to wash around 30 vehicles. More is not possible." The effort is worth it. Because "we get positive feedback from our drivers, including from those who only wash here occasionally". During the week the pilots wash their vehicles themselves. "We have a standard wash programme, which is stored in the wash facility. If, for example, a tautliner comes into the yard and enters the wash bay, the driver inserts his wash card and the system then starts the complete washing process. It was a little difficult in the beginning, because the washing was not intended to be self-sufficient. WashTec service technicians succeeded in adapting the wash programmes so that the pilots could wash on their own. Only our employee, who comes on Fridays and Saturdays, is in possession of other washing cards. These allow him to wash the vehicles with other programmes."
Tipping vehicles should under no circumstances be washed by the WashTec gantry, but have to be manually cleaned directly next to the wash bay in the open-air wash area. A circumstance that holds you back because it takes much longer than the perfectly functioning automatic commercial vehicle wash. However, this is necessary, among other things, because "we have two different circuits in the water conditioning process and do not want the approximately 200 bulk goods vehicles to dirty the washing water with their transport residues". With the water conditioning plant, Reinert Logistics also demonstrates as a role model and pioneer "an extremely environmentally conscious position. Thanks to the new state-of-the-art AquaPur water conditioning system, freshwater consumption has been significantly reduced," says Markus Röhl, Head of Marketing at Reinert Logistics. "Since we wash here up to 300 times, the effort was well worth it." Above all it was also worthwhile for our image on public roads. "The management attaches great importance to ensuring that the fleet is always clean when on the road. The WashTec commercial vehicle washing system is a guarantee that our vehicles are always clean on the outside when on the road," says Markus Röhl, evaluating the gantry's performance. By the way, René Reinert also creates a great impression in public with the original American show truck, which is in continuous use nationwide during the Christmas season. And truck racing fans know and appreciate the success of FIA pilot René Reinert, who finished third in the 2016 Truck Racing Session. The passion for racing lives on. Sporty, up-to-the-minute impressions are presented in the Reinert Racing Calendar 2019.
Text/ Pictures: Bernd Fiehöfer