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Year: 2006







Kevin MarheineRoll-on, Roll-off.

Inducted into the Shell Rimula Wall of Fame at ReUnion 2006.


Kevin Marheine started his own transport company with a loan from his wife-to-be, Marjorie, starting with one truck transporting coal from his family's mines in the Hunter Valley.  He eventually had over 40 trucks.  However, when he branched into semi-trailers for haulage of general goods interstate, he started looking for a better way of transporting perishables.

In 1949 Kevin Marheine designed and built the first refrigerated road transport vehicle in Australia and throughout the following years, expanded the concept of refrigerated transport around the country, building the first cold stores in most capital cities.

Before refrigerated transport, perishables were transported in ice with spoilage consuming up to half of the goods.  In 1959 he integrated Australia's eastern seaboard rail system using the 'roll-on, roll-off' method for transporting containers.

Frigmobile operated the first refrigerated vehicles to operate between Sydney and Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane and Melbourne and Devonport, with the 'roll-on, roll-off' principle on the Princess of Tasmania and the Bass Trader.  It used the 'piggy-back' system utilising rail between Port Augusta and Kalgoorlie and the first mechanically refrigerated containers on rail between Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne and Perth.  He also operated to Katherine and to Darwin hauling export meat and to the Gulf of Carpentaria to Brisbane with export quality prawns.

By 1967, Frigmobile had 180 refrigerated transports operating around Australia in a network system that was part of the international group, John Swire and Sons. During 1967 the Swire Group took over the operations of Frigmobile.  This gave Kevin the opportunity to start another company and in partnership with Ron Campbell, a long time friend who was involved heavily in Frigmobile, they formed the Charter Refrigerated Transport Company. Both Frigmobile and Charter still operate.


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