TRACY, CA – A truck assembly company in Tracy, Calif., has expanded its payroll by 50 employees thanks to business from Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E), including a project to assemble the utility's next generation of gas maintenance and construction trucks.

Designed with input from hundreds of PG&E employees, the trucks include features that improve safety and efficiency and reduce carbon emissions, according to American Truck & Trailer Body Company Inc., the company that provided the vehicles to PG&E.

PG&E ordered 57 of the trucks this year from American Truck & Trailer Body Company Inc., a minority-owned and family-operated business that just marked its 20th year. PG&E plans to order 55 to 60 more gas trucks in each of the next three years to gradually replace an aging part of its fleet.

American Truck & Trailer Body has provided a broad range of vehicles for PG&E over the past 13 years, including off-road equipment and flatbeds, including over 1,200 units in 2012 alone. In that time, the company has grown from $1.9 million in sales to an expected $21 million this year. Its workforce has nearly tripled to more than 90 employees, including 23 brought on just this year. And new plants have opened in Woodland, Calif.; Santa Ana, Calif.; and a second in Tracy.

The chassis comes from Canada, manufactured by Peterbilt Motors Company; Dakota Bodies Inc. makes the truck bodies in Watertown, S.D. Features of the new trucks include:

  • A device that loads heavy equipment such as jackhammers, saving employees from lifting on their own.                                                       
  • A roll-up compartment door for safer access on busy streets.                             
  • A more advanced braking system than the older truck model.                         
  • A longer and taller cab for better storage and comfort.                                    
  • Two mirrors on the hood to eliminate blind spots, plus heated door mirrors. 
  • The new trucks feature lower emissions and improved fuel efficiency.             
  • Paint applied in a state-of-the-art booth that dramatically reduces air pollutants.