Feature, Freight News, Road

Across Africa on a wheel and a prayer

[ May 12, 2016   //   ]

The ‘Training Trucks for Transaid’ initiative was officially launched at last night’s FTA Multimodal Awards in Birmingham – a daring cross-continent challenge to source and drive a bulk liquid tanker and a coach from Europe to Africa.

The initiative aims to deliver the vehicles to Transaid’s professional driver training programme in Lusaka, Zambia, and is the brainchild of four senior industry professionals – Multimodal director Robert Jervis, Peter Whitehead – managing director of PF Whitehead Logistics, Tony Newton – managing director of container company Mr Box, and David Kremer – president of toymaker Rubik’s Brand.

The four-strong executive team – who have a collective experience behind the wheel of a commercial vehicle of precisely zero – face considerable challenges in the year ahead. Firstly, each must work to earn their respective HGV and PCV licences, before they can drive the vehicles through Europe in Spring 2017.

The tanker and coach will then be shipped to the port of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, before the team finally drive the vehicles more than 1,200 miles to the Industrial Training Centre (ITC) in Zambia – Transaid’s home base in the country.

As part of the challenge, the team will also undertake additional courses in first aid, basic diesel engine maintenance and vehicle safety, and will also arrange all the logistics, including obtaining visas and the necessary travel documents for the vehicles.

The Training Trucks for Transaid team must also source the donated vehicles and fund the shipping costs themselves, and are looking for corporate supporters to bolster their own fundraising efforts.

For more information and to find out how you can support the Training Trucks for Transaid challenge contact Transaid’s team or visit