Love's Travel Stops & Country Stores is making it easier for truckers to fill up with diesel and get back on the road.
The Oklahoma City-based company has installed radio-frequency identification (RFID) readers at roughly 70 percent of its truck stops nationwide.
The equipment, installed over each diesel fueling lane, can read the signal from semitrailers with the necessary tag when they pull in to refuel. It does not work with passenger cars at this point.
Love's completed its first successful live customer transaction with the technology last week in Pauls Valley.
“We are excited about what we consider the next generation of fuel transaction processing through RFID technology,” said Jon Archard, director of fuel marketing at Love's.
Archard said Love's is on the leading edge of retailers trying out the new technology, which will allow trucking companies to replace the billing cards they typically hand out to drivers.
Love's is working with Comdata, which processes financial transactions, and QuikQ, the company that developed Fuel Island Manager software, to handle billing for fuel purchases made with RFID tags.
He said “cardless fueling” technology allows companies to let their equipment authorize fuel purchases rather than their drivers.
“As soon as a truck pulls into the fuel lane with a tag on its windshield, then the transaction begins,” Archard said.
He said the technology should speed up the fueling process, since drivers won't have to swipe their billing card at the pump, while helping companies cut down on theft since the pump shuts down as soon as the truck leaves the fueling bay.
“Our hope is our customers now have another reason to choose Love's,” Archard said.
Love's is in 40 states
Love's has 235 truck stops in 40 states. Officials hope to have RFID technology in place at each of them by September.
The company's fuel tanker fleet has been using cardless fueling successfully for some time.
“Our fleet has been very satisfied with the ease and automation of using cardless fueling technology at Love's locations for the past year,” Archard said.