Commercial Vehicle Operations (Draft)
Stakeholders expressed a number of needs specifically related to improved information and functions associated with commercial vehicle operations, including:
- Improve the coordination and dissemination of real-time traveller information in order to give goods movement stakeholders and the general travelling public the ability to make optimal choices with regards to (i) travel time data and border wait times; (ii) congestion and planned/unplanned incidents; (iii) weather information, operational constraints and alternative routes:
- Information should be available in a variety of formats to both drivers and dispatchers;
- Information needs to be reliable;
- Information Service Providers may be private sector third parties; and
- Information provided to drivers needs to be in audible form (e.g. voice smart phone application) to avoid driver distraction safety considerations.
- Improve delivery of time-of-day/seasonal load/oversize regulations, and the permitting and route management process. Interactions with the carrier community need to be more user friendly, and coordinated among jurisdictions;
- Improve traffic management and, in particular, the means by which incidents can be managed optimally in order to resume normal traffic flow as rapidly as possible. Particular attention needs to be focussed on the arterial road network in the vicinity of intermodal terminals, and intercity freeway corridors; and
- Improve inter-jurisdictional traffic event management coordination to maximize existing infrastructure and reduce the impacts of congestion, incidents and planned events/maintenance with regards to traffic. This must be realized generally along the complete span of the ON-QC Smart Corridor, but particularly through urban areas, intermodal transfer points and ports.
The Current Environment, while incorporating some technological improvements in recent years, is still primarily focused on the following methods of communication to determine current traffic conditions, weather information, bridge/tunnel status and other travel information:
- CB/mobile radio communications between/among truckers;
- Cell phone or fleet management system communications between trucker and dispatcher (with dispatcher having access to internet-based information);
- Radio broadcast traffic reports (when/where available); and
- Variable message signage from public sector transportation agencies.
The current environment consists primarily of multiple independent traffic management systems, each with responsibility over its own geographic territory. As jurisdictions have attempted to leverage the data that they are gathering internally for traffic management purposes into public facing traveller information systems, ATIS platforms have been launched separately for each agency, meaning that comprehensive traveller information is available, yet the complete picture along a commercial or non-commercial travellerís full route can be prohibitively complicated to access. As a result, incident and real-time information often fails to be received by travellers in time, resulting in the potential for poor decision making.
ATIS resources are frequently consulted prior to departure, but the situation may have changed en-route, necessitating real-time updates. Smartphones and wireless devices have become ubiquitous; however traditional modes of visual and tactile interface run afoul of distracted driver legislation and safety. As a result, real time updates are not always sought, sometimes leading to poor route choices.
The Smart Corridor incorporates new and emerging operational and information integration concepts, including:
- Container reservation systems, which will allow for congestion to be mitigated by spreading out intermodal terminal truck traffic across a day (i.e., reduce peak hour delays);
- Dispatcher pre-trip route planning for trucks that utilizes both historical and real-time traffic, weather, bridge and other information to optimize route selection for congestion avoidance;
- Dispatcher and in-vehicle real-time dynamic routing, that utilizes real-time traffic, weather, bridge and other information to optimize route selection, including recommending alternative routing, to support congestion avoidance;
- Truck drivers are able to make electronic parking reservations in advance at a truck parking facility, which promotes adherence to hours of service regulations by guaranteeing a parking spot; and
- Truck driver hours of service are automatically and continually calculated, and truck sensors monitor key safety factors such as tire pressure and brake condition.
From the perspective of the transportation authorities, the future scenario incorporates:
- Implementation of a province-wide (or corridor-wide) Integrated Traveller Information System which acts as a single access user portal for the various traveller information resources which are available from the many jurisdictions. The collection of this data will remain local and by agency, but there is no reason why it cannot be shared in real-time to a consolidating entity using a standardized data interface;
- Provide an open-source smartphone application (or connected vehicle application) which will act as a frontend for this portal. Through their personal client application, users will be able to create a profile with configurable preferences and frequently used routes. Users will also be able configure push notifications for particular warnings/advisories which they can access while in route.