Trailer Bridge to Be Awarded U.S. Patent for Cargo Process
Jacksonville, FL (Nov. 13, 2007: Trailer Bridge, Inc. today announced that it has been notified by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) that the Company has received a notice of allowance for its patent application related to the process of loading and unloading containers on its Triplestack Box Carrier(TM) vessels. Trailer Bridge as assignee had initially applied for this patent in April 1998 and the application has been amended several
times following review by the USPTO. The patent is expected to be formally awarded within three months of payment of an administrative fee to the USPTO and thereafter the full text of the patent will be readily accessible via the USPTO website at www.uspto.gov. The inventors of the patent are John D. McCown, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer of Trailer Bridge and Malcom P. McLean, the late founder of the Company.
This patent, a type that is generally referred to as a process patent, will cover the Company's unique method of loading and unloading its Triplestack Box Carrier(TM) vessels, the first vessels in the world built exclusively to move 53' containers. Trailer Bridge was the first company to use 53' containers in ocean service in Puerto Rico a decade ago and more recently became the first company to use 53' containers in regularly scheduled international service linked to the mainland when it expanded to the Dominican Republic. The process involves aligning a plank with the deck of the Triplestack Box Carrier(TM) vessels and accessing the deck directly with mobile reach-stackers to load and unload containers. This operation generally results in more productivity compared to typical operations involving large gantry cranes which require expensive and specialized dock facilities. In addition, the Company's method can readily handle 53' containers which are often too large to be handled by traditional gantry cranes.
Trailer Bridge has previously received several patents related to its Vehicle Transport Modules(R) (VTM(R)), special purpose modules for receiving motorized vehicles for transportation that interchange easily between transport modes without the necessity of re-handling the vehicles, but this will be the first patent it has received related directly to its unique marine transportation system.
John D. McCown, Chairman & CEO, said, "This patent protects a unique, cost-efficient aspect of our operation and we are pleased to have finally secured it. In addition to being a contributor to our competitive cost advantage in the markets we now serve, this low-cost system is incredibly flexible and will allow marine service outside of traditional port areas. We anticipate that this patented process will play a key role in our future long term growth. It is another differentiating factor of a unique transportation system. We will remained focused on developing and using hard assets in innovative and unique ways and where we can we will seek to protect those
intellectual property rights for the long-term benefit of our shareholders."
• About Trailer Bridge
Trailer Bridge provides integrated trucking and marine freight service to and from all points in the lower 48 states and Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic, bringing efficiency, service, security and environmental and safety benefits to shipments in those traffic lane. This total transportation system utilizes its own trucks, drivers, trailers, containers and U.S. flag vessels to link the mainland with Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic via marine facilities in Jacksonville, San Juan and Puerto Plata. Additional information on Trailer Bridge is available at the www.trailerbridge.com website.