Beverage transport: Sergio García is welcomed with a smile
Sergio García delivers beverages in the narrowest streets of Tarragona. Both he and his Atego are greeted with a smile.
"To have a drink and to smile, that is almost the same thing;" says Sergio García. If that is true, then Sergio has been delivering to the provincial capital Tarragona and its surroundings with a smile for the past 20 years. "The customers are always pleased to see me," he says.
His working day starts at seven am, when he loads his truck for the first time at the registered office of Serhs Distribución in Palafolls (Barcelona). During the course of the day, he covers around 110 km and punctually delivers orders to 25 customers.
"The Atego is the best vehicle for a widely branched distribution network," he says. Every day Sergio has to contend with narrow streets and tight bends. But he shows no signs of trepidation: "The steering on the Atego is precise, it's excellent to steer." And he adds that the Mercedes PowerShift 3 automated transmission is an invaluable support when pulling away and stopping in urban traffic, in terms of both comfort and economy: "With the Atego, everything is plain sailing."
According to Sergio, the good impression left by a vehicle from Mercedes also counts, "very much, in fact". During his working life, this pro has driven various brands of vehicles and confirms that none can compete with the modern and aerodynamic design of the brand with the star.
Every morning he sees to it personally that the truck looks immaculate before he drives off. "Of course, customers prefer it if their order is transported in a premium vehicle," he adds. "It is like when you have the choice to drink a refreshing beverage from a plastic beaker that you then throw away or from a glass with ice and a slice of lemon", he says; "that really tastes different, it puts a broader smile on your face."
He lives in Torredembarra, a little town in the province of Tarragona, and says that it is his two sons that put the broadest smile of all on his face. "Whenever I can, I do sports with them. We ride our bicycles or jog to the beach," he explains. He is lucky to have the choice between Barrio Marítimo beach and the so-called La Paella beach without having to leave Torredembarra. "Here you can do sports outside throughout all year round thanks to the climate," he says.
The province of Tarragona lies on the Mediterranean coast and has beaches with warm water and fine, gold-coloured sand, which have given their coast – the Costa Dorada (Gold Coast) – its name and made it into a first-class tourist attraction. Understandably, its pleasant temperatures stimulate consumption in the typical tapas bars. Sergio delivers his goods to them every day.
He likes everything about his work, he says: "Because of the contact with people the day is very entertaining and time flies." The low entrance into the cab and the comfortable cockpit make it possible for Sergio to concentrate fully on his job and fulfil his tasks stress-free.
This pro has been working for Serhs Distribución for five years. The company has a range of over 6,000 items, which are delivered in three temperature ranges: at ambient temperature, cooled and frozen. Sergio explains that according to the company philosophy every stop should be economically advantageous. At the customer's, the greatest number of products possible should be stocked up in a single visit: "That is also more convenient and economical for the customer:"
He admits that inner-city deliveries can be somewhat stressful if you do not have the correct equipment: "Traffic congestion, narrow streets, drivers that are in a hurry..." "You get the impression that drivers in cities are always late for their appointments," says Sergio calmly. "At the beginning, I always used to get nervous too, but now with 20 years' experience I know that you get to your destination quickest if you drive calmly and hold the steering wheel of an Atego in your hands."
Photos: Begoña Tremps de Pablo