Komatsu opens innovative new Wacol Distribution Centre

The $48 million facility, located in Wacol, Brisbane, represents an expansion of 70 per cent in warehousing capacity for Komatsu.

Komatsu has officially opened its new Wacol Distribution Centre, built to service over 3000 customers across Queensland, the Northern Territory, NSW, New Zealand and New Caledonia.

The $48 million facility, located in Wacol, Brisbane, represents an expansion of 70 per cent in warehousing capacity, improving parts and components availability, further reducing turnaround times, and streamlining ordering efficiency.

Covering an area of 17,500 square metres, it has resulted in the creation of more than 50 new jobs within the business, and is the single largest building Komatsu has ever constructed in Australia.

The new Wacol Distribution Centre has been commissioned during Komatsu’s Centenary year, when the company has been celebration the 100th anniversary of its founding in May 1921 in Komatsu City, Japan. Komatsu has been operating in Australia since 1961.

According to Sean Taylor, Komatsu’s CEO, the key driver of its new Distribution Centre is to improve customer satisfaction across the regions it serves.

“By using the latest in warehousing technologies, we have been able to drastically increase the efficiency of this operation, with pick rates of fast-moving parts increasing by 300 per cent – which will contribute to faster delivery times for customers,” says Taylor.

“In addition, order consolidation innovations have driven a 22% reduction in individual packages, which contributes to a lower carbon footprint – an important driver in our commitment to lower emissions.

“At the same time, we have achieved a six-star energy rating for the building through the use of solar power and an energy-efficient design, while 89% of our waste from the site is diverted away from landfill.”

Taylor says a critical element of the facility has been to set the highest standards in workplace health and safety.

“Our Wacol Distribution Centre incorporates the latest in safety innovations, including wire guidance systems to control forklift movements, dock safety controls that ensure people are kept out of harm’s way, and zero gravity cranes to minimise manual lifting.”

The new facility covers an area of 17,500 square metres and has resulted in the creation of more than 50 new jobs.

Komatsu’s own technology innovations also played an important part when constructing the new facility.

“In preparing this site for the new building, our earthworks contractor was able to make use of our own SmartConstruction technology,” says Taylor.

“A cornerstone of Smart Construction is our intelligent Machine Control, or IMC.

“SmartConstruction links machine operation directly to site design. The semi-autonomous capabilities of Komatsu dozers and excavators ensured highly accurate compliance with the design, driving productivity and safety,” he says.

“Furthermore, Komatsu’s drone technology worked in concert with our contractor’s iMC machines to volumetrically scan the site to determine progress, in turn feeding data into Komatsu’s Edge technology, which has the ability to process millions of data points in real time.

“Our project management team, along with our contractors, designers and surveyors were all able to take advantage of Smart Construction’s ability to combine 3D design data with aerial mapping and intelligent machine data, so they could visualise the project at every stage of construction.

“This was a perfect example of Komatsu being able to take real advantage of our own technology, and realise its benefits first hand,” says Taylor.


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