For transportation of different loads and materials, the trucking companies in Australia use various vehicles that are specifically designed to pull trailers behind. Generally, we can see two types of trailers on the roads all over Australia: open (or also called flat bed) trailers, and enclosed trailers. The flat bed trailers are used for transportation of big and over-sized loads, while the enclosed trailers are used for transportation of food products and other temperature sensitive goods. The flat bed trailers are the most common, because these trailers are used for moving various materials, such as: construction materials, heavy-duty vehicles, containers, and other industrial loads which cannot be placed in enclosed trailers. For transportation of containers, there are special trailers designed for that purpose. This trailer is known as side loader trailer.

The side loader trailer is like any other flat bed trailer, but with one main difference: this trailer comes with two crane mechanisms which are placed on each end of the trailer chassis. Therefore, the side loader trailer is specifically designed for transportation of cargo containers. The two lifting mechanisms on each end, allow the driver or operator to lift and place a standard ISO container on the trailer. The hydraulic cranes are designed to pick up containers directly from the ground, from railway wagons, or from other vehicles where the containers are placed. Depending in which country is used, the side loader trailer is also known as self loading trailer or self loading truck, sideloader, swinglifter, boxmover, container picker, and many other alternative names.

The first side loader trailer was invented in the 1960’s by Kaspar Klaus, a German engineer who invented a number of other patents in the manufacturing industry. Since then, many different side loader trailers have been presented on the market, and each comes with specific design and lifting capabilities. Today, the side loader trailers can be seen on the roads all over Australia, since they are suitable for moving on general public roads without any limitations. However, the side loader trailer is most commonly used for picking and delivering containers within commercial districts. Beside the fact that the side loader trailer can be loaded and unloaded by itself, usually reach stackers are used for the unloading process at the port terminals.

Flexible and very useful, the side loader trailer offers many benefits and advantages for the transport companies. Some of them are the following ones:

It can maximize the container movements on a daily basis.

With easy to use and operate lifting mechanisms on both sides of the chassis, all standard ISO containers can be safely picked from the ground and efficiently transported to the desired location with minimal human effort. This increases the productivity.

Less equipment and operators required for the loading/unloading process.

The driver or operator of the side loader trailer can do the loading and unloading process all by himself. There is no need for special equipment and extra workers, so this reduces the operating costs.

Durability and easy for service or maintenance.

Most side loader trailers that are available on the market offer high durability and excellent maneuverability, even when used on difficult terrains. Furthermore, a typical side loader trailer is made of simple parts that don’t require complex service and maintenance.

Can be used for handling hazardous, valuable and fragile cargo.

Beside the standard containers, the side loader trailer is also used when valuable, hazardous or fragile cargo needs to be moved from one location to another. This trailer ensures that the containers will be safely transported to the desired location, and placed where the client requires.

Double stacking.

Just like the material handling machines which can stack pallets one on top of another, the side loader trailer can stack containers in the same way. This is especially beneficial in places where the space is limited.