Transaid bicycle ambulance

Transaid royal patron HRH The Princess Royal thanked the transport industry for providing its expertise to help develop new forms of transport suitable for use in Africa at a lunch held yesterday in London to mark the 125th anniversary of trailer builder Schmitz Cargobull.

“Without corporate members it would be more difficult to find new ways of working,” she said. “We rely on their expertise to prove new technology and basic forms of transport and then present them to big donors like Comic Relief.

“Schmitz Cargobull is one of the top three trailer manufacturers in the world and its ability to help develop specialist products is dramatic.”

In recent years Transaid has developed low cost bicycle ambulances to take pregnant women to hospital and is currently trialling a new anti-malaria drug that can be given locally to keep sufferers alive until they can be transported to hospital for proper treatment.

Schmitz became the first trailer manufacturer to become one of Transaid’s 35 corporate members last year and its sales director Boris Billich said the company was keen to maintain its leadership of the European trailer market.

Last year its 11 factories built 58,000 trailers and it expected to sell more in 2018. He said new technology means that operators were now looking for more than just a quality trailer at a good price. “It has gone beyond the trailer and is now more about data processing,” he said. “We are making the trailer smarter to distance ourselves from our competitors.”