Taking to the road for service on board

Alfa Laval’s customers aren’t just businesses. What they do often affects people’s day-to-day lives. That’s certainly true of marine businesses, which transport goods the whole world depends on. If vessels run into trouble, they can’t wait until the COVID-19 pandemic subsides. Neither can we.

On March 12th, we got a call from a marine customer in the United States who had issues with a boiler on board. Initially, we tried to solve the problem through remote technical support. But we soon realized that dispatching a service engineer was the only solution to put the boiler back in operation. That would require some effort, because the United States government currently has restrictions on domestic and international air travel (as do we as a company).

Rather than flying, we had to find an alternative way to handle the situation – one that would be safe for everyone involved, but also beneficial and cost-effective for the customer. To get from our office in Florida to Savannah, Georgia, where the vessel was berthed, ground transport was the only option. The journey was 500 miles and 10 hours of driving, and it had to be closely coordinated with our spare parts department. Since the vessel didn’t have the required parts on board, we needed to have them there when our service engineer arrived.

It was neither an easy decision nor an easy drive, but we took all precautionary measures and our engineer Evaldo Filho travelled to the vessel by road. We got our engineer on board quickly, got the job done and got our engineer safely home again. Just as importantly, we got our customer moving again, which made the team’s hard work all worth it.


Vinod Sreenivasan
Global Technical Specialist – Boiler
International Marine Service
Alfa Laval, USA

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“If the vessel isn’t moving, you make the drive.”

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