Flemish road haulier brings Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine to the four corners of Europe

Not only is the Pfizer/BioNTech corona vaccine being produced at a plant in Puurs (Antwerp Province) in Belgium, but a Flemish company H. Essers is responsible for getting the vaccine to people across Europe.

Joris Mertens, who is responsible for pharmaceutical transport at the Limburg company, concedes the logistics of the operation provide quite a challenge.  During the transport the vaccine needs to be kept at a temperature of -80°C.

“Our trailers are refrigerators on wheels.  Our drivers get special training.  If anything goes wrong, they immediately know what to do and can intervene”.

All vehicles are linked to a ‘control tower’.

“At all times we can see the location of all vehicles and also see the temperature on board. The low temperature is maintained thanks to the Pfizer/BioNTech packaging that contains a specific type of dry ice”.

The vaccines are of great value.  As a result stringent security is required during their journey:

“Trucks are escorted by specialised security firms and depending on the country possibly also by local police” says Joris Mertens.

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