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Buried in the snow or stolen by penguins – we couldn’t find the culprit, but losing keys in Antarctica proved to be an ongoing and frustrating issue for the Antarctica New Zealand team at Scott Base, who were trying to get back-ups and replacements for their fleet of Toyota vehicles.
Normally when you need a new key for a vehicle, a simple visit to your local Toyota dealer will solve all your problems. They take the master key, register the transponder and almost instantly you have a new workable key. Obviously this becomes more of a problem when your local Toyota dealer is more than 3,500 kilometres away and you’re up to your eyeballs in snow in the southernmost continent on Earth, Antarctica.
Miles Toyota in Christchurch was dealing with the issue remotely, giving their usual helpful advice over the phone and via email. However, things just weren’t working.
Further contact with the team of technical service engineers in Toyota New Zealand’s Palmerston North Head Office facility revealed that, they too had some difficulty registering the transponders. On further investigation, they realised that, as the vehicles were 2010 models Scott Base required a Toyota diagnostic tool.
The logistics of providing new tools are not so easy when the mighty Southern Ocean separates you from your dealer. Old diagnostic tools no longer in service were sourced and gifted by Toyota New Zealand to Scott Base.
The result was the keys could be correctly coded and re-commissioned.
While the chances of this sort of thing happening are few and far between, having vehicles unusable with no spare keys is unproductive and wasteful.
It’s even more important when the Toyotas support Antarctica New Zealand’s world-class climate research programme, unlocking secrets from the frozen continent itself.
Scott Base’s mechanical engineers were grateful for the diagnostic equipment. It was a fine example of living the believe statements – we believe in working together!
Source: Believe Magazine - Issue 13 2016