Reachstackers - what are they for?

Container truck workerForklift trucks are used to transport a variety of materials. There are also specialised vehicles that can carry much heavier batches of up to tens of tonnes. These can be empty containers or containers filled with various materials. Such trucks are called container trucks and are extremely helpful in maritime transport, as containers are mainly transported by this route. There are many machines available on the market for handling them. Let's take a look at what it all looks like.

What is a reachstacker?

We can divide this type of trolley into several different types. Those interested in this topic may have heard of reachstackers. This English name literally means a reachstacker, which is used to transport and stack containers. It allows full containers to be transported. Their capacity can usually be up to forty tonnes - something that the average reachstacker should be able to handle without any problems. These units are manufactured by various companies.

Container truck brands

Kalmar, a Finnish company, is best known for manufacturing forklift trucks, particularly those carrying containers. "Kalmar" can carry materials weighing up to 50 tonnes. They have better technological solutions in contrast to the older type of forklifts. Kalmar equipment has a SmartFleet function. This allows us to access data on the performance of our machine. There are also forklifts on the market from companies: Konecranes, Hyster and Gottwald. These companies in turn also offer a range of solutions, including venture financing. We therefore have a choice between different forklift brands.

Other types of trolleys

High lift trucksWe may have to deal with container handlers that will not be reachstackers, i.e. they will not be able to carry a full container, only an empty one. Equipment used to transport empty containers can handle weights of up to ten tonnes. It is worth knowing that container handlers are characterised by the use of a counterbalance mechanism, which makes the carriage of heavy materials possible at all. These types of machines are also known as heavy forklifts because of the load they are able to carry from one place to another. Importantly, there are machines that are even capable of carrying two containers at a time. This is possible due to the double mast design.


Forklifts are usually powered by oil or kerosene-based fuel. Recently, however, more and more equipment has been produced that runs on electricity. Kalmar has started to produce electric forklifts. At first, these had noticeably smaller carrying capacities than those for the traditional energy source of fuel. At the end of 2021 Kalmar produced an electric trolley specifically for Norwegian ports. These can carry up to 45 tonnes. All this is done in order to reduce carbon dioxide.

Reachstackers are important for maritime transport as they enable containers to be transported efficiently. Using them properly ensures the safety not only of ourselves but also of our colleagues. For this purpose, a training course in container handling will be useful. You will find such a course at the OSO Operator Training Centre! You will learn the practical skills and acquire the knowledge necessary to use this equipment. For prices and other training-related details, we invite you to send us your enquiry via our contact form or our hotline.