Modern Transportation, an industry leader in bulk logistics solutions, announced the successful deployment of freight service to the Owens Corning Roofing Plant in Savannah, Ga., using trucks powered solely by 12.0L natural gas-fueled engines. The high volume, dedicated service established between Sanford, NC and Savannah, GA on April 18th, 2013, is the first ever built around commercial-order, production-built engines (Cummins Westport ISX12 G) fueled exclusively with liquefied natural gas (LNG).

“We’re absolutely thrilled to operate the first production transportation service powered by 12.0L natural gas engines,” said Patrick Cozzens, president of Modern Transportation. “Along with our partners who made this happen and Owens Corning who ‘drove’ the idea, we’re committed to delivering high quality logistics solutions in the safest, greenest and most sustainable fashion. As a participant in the natural gas production industry, we’re also delighted and honored to utilize America’s own shale gas reserves to power our fleet.”

This breakthrough in truck fuel technology and power was given strong impetus by Owens Corning through their strategic focus on transitioning their supply chain into natural gas-fueled solutions as rapidly as possible. A Fortune 500 manufacturer and market innovator in glass-fiber technology, Owens Corning operates one of the nations’ largest supply chain infrastructures. OC’s Chief Sustainability Officer, Frank O’Brien-Bernini, took note of this milestone: “As we strive to improve the total life cycle environmental impact of our products, we have challenged our supply chain/logistics partners to join us in dramatically reducing the greenhouse gas emissions of our inbound raw materials and outbound finished products. Modern Transportation has proactively embraced this challenge, solving problems and presenting viable conversion opportunities. We applaud their initiative in contributing to our diesel-to-natural gas conversion strategy.”

Modern Transportation has closely monitored the NG-powered truck sector and had opted to defer on freight opportunities tied to natural gas powering until the output from prior generation 9-liter engines was improved upon. Patrick Cozzens elaborated, “The horsepower required to move the freight loads common to heavy bulk trucking – particularly for the high volume, mission-critical manufacturers who demand safe, reliable and responsive service – made the 12-liter motor a necessity. As the NG fuel supply infrastructure matures, we believe this generation of NG-fueled engines will transform the face of trucking.”

The power plant making this service possible is the Cummins Westport ISX12 G installed in Freightliner Cascadia day cabs. Old Dominion Truck Leasing actively pursed ownership of these first production units and leases them directly to Modern Transportation. The fleet will fuel at Clean Energy’s Latta, SC station and will complete each 600-mile roundtrip on a single fueling.