A student hopes his new hologram road signs which pulse at drivers will lead to a revolution in the way motorists are given information on the roads. Nottingham Trent University undergraduate Charles Gale has already obtained a patent for his design and is set to meet with transport officials to discuss how it…
Nottingham Trent University undergraduate Charles Gale has already obtained a patent for his design and is set to meet with transport officials to discuss how it could be used across the UK.
Utilising lenticular hologram technology, the signs display an animated reflective image which appears to pulse in day or night as road users approach and pass them.
His design is in response to calls for an overhaul of the UK s road signage network, which has been criticised as being cluttered and confusing by a number of people, such as parliamentary under-secretary of state for transport Norman Baker MP.
Charles, 22, who has studied product design at the School of Architecture, Design and the Built Environment during the past four years, will display a working prototype at the university s Art and Design Degree Shows 2013 between 31 May and 8 June.
He said: A lot of politicians have been debating the need for improvements to the UK s traffic signs this year, and that s what s really inspired the project.
Road signs have barely changed for years and are fading into the background. Studies have shown that satnavs and roadside advertising may be a distraction to motorists.
Using lenticulars could help road signs really grab people s attention. They catch your eye and you re instinctively drawn to the information.
From our research, it appears no-one else has ever considered using this technology in road signs before. A lot of research is LED-based, but the issue with that is delivering power to rural areas.
That s what s great about my design it doesn t require any electricity whatsoever. The signs are made only of plastic and ink.
They can also be retrofitted onto existing signs, so they re really cost effective to fit and require no upheaval.
Charles has now founded his own company, Keyframe Signage, with the help of the university s centre for entrepreneurship and enterprise, The Hive.
Once his patent has been fully approved, he is looking to license the design to existing manufacturers rather than make the products himself.
He is also exploring the potential to apply the technology to other signs, such as those for fire escapes.
It s been an amazing project to work on, said Charles. I m really excited because it s a real opportunity for me to be my own boss and do things my way.
James Dale, principal lecturer in product design in the School of Architecture, Design and the Built Environment, said: Charlie s idea is potentially a real stroke of genius.
When he first spoke about it I think a lot of people wished they d thought of it first.
We really hope he can now go on to make it a success and help improve the way in which drivers are given important information on the roads.
Mount Vernon, WA – The trucking company involved in a Washington state bridge collapse says it received a state-issued permit to carry its oversized load across the bridge.
Ed Scherbinski is vice president of Mullen Trucking in Alberta. He said in an interview with The Associated Press that the Washington state Department of Transportation had approved of the company s plan to drive a piece of drilling equipment along Interstate 5 to Vancouver, Wash.
He also said the company hired a local escort to help navigate the route.
Scherbinski said company officials are as bewildered as everyone else. He said he s not sure whether the Mullen Trucking vehicle was the cause of the collapse, but the driver could see the bridge falling in his rearview mirror.
Consistent with the current macroeconomic trends, railroads started the year on a mixed note. Going by the rail traffic report for the first quarter 2013, growth in automotive and petroleum products shipments was steady while coal and grain shipments continued to cast a shadow over the rail freight industry.
According to the Association of American Railroads (AAR) rail traffic report, cumulative performance of the North American railroads (including U.S., Canadian and Mexican railroads) have fallen 1.5% year over year in the first quarter of the year. The biggest contributor to this decline was grain, which dropped 11%. Coal volumes followed closely, falling around 7%.
Going by the quarterly performance of the class 1 railroad, we see continued lower volumes from most of these carriers. One of the largest class 1 railroads in North America — Union Pacific Corp. ( UNP1 – Analyst Report2 ) — registered first quarter volume decline of 2% year over year. Another major railroad CSX Corp. ( CSX3 – Analyst Report4 ) also reported a similar level of decline in its volumes. Going forward, Canadian counterpart, Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd. ( CP – Analyst Report5 ) also experienced lackluster growth trend with flat volume growth on a year-over-year basis.
However, railroad operators like Kansas City Southern ( KSU6 – Analyst Report7 ) , Norfolk Southern Corp. ( NSC8 – Analyst Report9 ) and Canadian National Railway Company ( CNI10 – Analyst Report11 ) have shown modest volume growth, mainly driven by the emerging automotive business and rising petrochemical shipments.
Notably, despite mixed carload results, these carriers have mostly generated positive earnings in the reported quarter. The primary catalyst to this bottom-line performance was operational efficiency even in times of low market demand. Rising employee productivity, deploying fuel-efficient locomotives and undertaking railroad safety measures are some of the key drivers of profitability even in adverse market conditions.
Rail carriers like Canadian Pacific recorded operating ratio improvement of 430 basis points year over year. Continued focus on maintaining asset efficiencies, safety measures and increased productivity have been the prime contributors to Canadian Pacific s success in the first quarter. There are several other near-term growth catalysts in the railroad industry.
Rising Contribution of Petroleum Product Shipment
According to the AAR report, rail traffic from petroleum products has seen a whopping 46% growth in the three-month period ended Mar 30. According to the Energy Information Administration s (EIA) reports, U.S. crude oil exceeded 7 million barrels per day production, representing record growth since the last two decades. Further, in 2013, long-term projections of EIA suggest that this growth may also go up to 10 million barrels per day over a period of 2020 to 2040.
As a result, this surge represents a potential opportunity for revenue accretion, which the railroads are trying to tap with infrastructural development. According to industry sources, the role of crude oil as a revenue contributor has grown by leaps and bounds in a four-year span from a mere 3% to 30% of the oil and petroleum products shipment by railroads.
Despite the fact that rail-based crude transportation costs five times more ($10 $15 per barrel), crude shippers are compelled to rely on rail-based transport. This is due to the lack of pipeline infrastructural support in key oil and gas fields like Bakken Shale Formation in North Dakota and Montana, Eagle Ford Shale, Barnett Shale and Permian basin in Texas, the Gulf of Mexico and Alberta oil sand fields in Canada.
In 2012, Canadian National Railway, which operates along the Western Canada (Alberta region) to the Gulf Coast, has shipped approximately 30,000 tank cars of volumes of crude oil, while its counterpart Canadian Pacific shipped 53,000 tank cars of crude during the same period. Another giant railroader, BNSF Railroad of Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BRK-B), which serves the North Dakota region reportedly earned $272 million from crude shipments last year by shipping approximately 100 million barrels of oil.
In the coming days, we expect railroads to accelerate their investment in order to create adequate service capacity for the oil and gas markets. Canadian Pacific projects crude shipment to reach up to 70,000 oil-tank cars by the year-end and move to 140,000 by the end of 2015. This kind of exponential growth in crude oil shipments is taking place across the rail industry. Consequently, we expect petroleum shipments to remain favorable and emerge as a significant revenue contributor in the long term.
Currently, Mexico is a growing market for automotive production and assembly given the lower cost of production there. As a result, markets sources predict that in the coming years, auto manufacturers are expected add capacity to accelerate manufacturing by 600,000 additional vehicles per annum. In the first three months of 2013, auto shipments by rail in Mexico increased 4.6% while in the U.S., auto shipment via rail rose about 2%. This counterbalanced the 1% drop in rail auto shipments in the Canadian market.
We believe upcoming plants by Honda Motor Co., Ltd. (HMC12), Nissan Motor Co. (NSANY13), Mazda and Audi would further boost auto production in Mexico. The facilities would also bode well for automotive shipments. Based on these proposed expansion plans, finished vehicle production in the Mexican market is expected to reach 3.5 million units in 2015, up about 35% from the 2012 production level.
The growth will provide carriers like Kansas City Southern, which operates across the Gulf of Mexico, ample opportunities to ship raw material into Mexico and return the finished products to the domestic market as well as to the U.S. and Canada. The increase in automotive production is also giving rise to new steel plants and processing centers across the company s service networks. These steel plants are likely to bring opportunities for steel shipments and other related products.
However, in the coming year, the growth can be slightly muted by the onslaught of the fiscal cliff. According to market reports, auto sales may see single-digit growth due to a change in consumer behavior owing to the U.S. tax policy changes. If the situation improves on the macro front, there should not be a cyclical downturn in the way of automotives.
The railroad industry is gaining largely from the ongoing conversion of traffic from truckload to rail intermodal. Intermodal is gaining popularity among shippers given its cost effectiveness over truck. On average, railroads are considered 300% more fuel-efficient than trucks, and we believe that intermodal will play an important role in driving the rail industry based on the growing awareness among shippers about its benefits.
Currently, rail intermodal accounts for over 20% of the railroads revenue, second in line after coal. In the coming years, we expect this contribution to only rise given the growing dependence of shippers on intermodal services.
Apart from these positives, other factors likely to have a material impact on Railroads near-term, top and bottom line growth include:
Coal represents important commodities and accounts for over 40% of railroad tonnage. According to EIA reports, coal production hit lows of 9.9 million short tons (MMst) in first quarter 2013, representing a steep decline from 22.7 MMst in the year-ago quarter. As per AAR reports, coal shipments by rail also continued to decline 8% in the U.S. market. The decline was partially offset by 11% and 9% growth in rail shipments in the Mexican and Canadian markets, respectively.
Domestic coal demand, of which utility coal accounts for approximately 93%, is witnessing persistent declines. Lower natural gas prices imply that gas is largely substituting the demand for utility coal. Additionally, higher stockpile levels have resulted in lower utility coal demand. Besides, natural gas prices, another important factor that resulted in the decline of coal-powered plants are the environmental issues associated with coal burning.
However, in 2013, coal consumption in the domestic market is expected to grow 7% year over year to 948 MMst and reach up to 957 MMst in 2014 on the back of rising natural gas prices.
On the export front, the scenario remains entirely different. After reaching highs of coal export in 2012 (126MMst), EIA projects U.S. coal exports to decline 15% year over year to 107 MMst in 2013. However, 2014 may show modest improvement with exports of 109 MMst. Factors like an economic overhang in European markets, lower U.S. coal pricing, higher stockpile levels and increased exports from Indonesia as well as a recovery in the Australian mines are the primary reasons for the expected decline.
Since 2012, the Grain market has been experiencing lows due the drought in the Mid-West markets. The outlook for 2013 is also not encouraging enough to elevate rail freight shipment from its current lull.
According the rail traffic report of AAR, North American grain shipment registered a decline of almost 11% in the first three months of 2013, which was partially offset by 24.6% growth in Mexican grain shipment. In April, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released the World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report, which states that total U.S. corn demand, will go down by 11.1% from the year-ago level.
U.S. corn exports will hit a low of 48.2% from last year with use of ethanol decreasing 9.2%. We believe that the impact of lowered estimates would be felt on railroad shipment as rail freight serves the majority of export shipment in the crop market.
Investment in development and expansion plans remain critical when analyzing railroads prospects. These capital investments are a double-edged sword. While the investments put significant stress on margin performance, forgoing these would result in a loss of growth prospects.
Railway investments are paramount given the evolving supply chain management and increasing role of airfreight carriers in offering freight transportation services. These investments build the required infrastructure needed for railways to stay afloat in a competitive environment not only within the railroad industry but also with other modes like truck, barges and cargo airlines.
As a result, investments in infrastructural projects have been an integral part of railroads development. However, this sector, characterized by huge capital influx has been drawing funds primarily through private financing.
As a result, investment plans when undertaken can have a considerable impact on the liquidity position of the company and may lead to a highly leverage balance sheet. According to AAR reports, railroads invest approximately 17% of their annualized revenue, which compares with only 3% of average U.S. manufactures revenue on capital expenditures.
According to the Department of Transportation (DOT), the demand for rail freight transportation will increase approximately 88% by 2035. As a result, Class I carriers would have to expedite their investments to meet this growing demand.
It is estimated that railroads would require $149 billion to improve rail network infrastructure within this stipulated period. In respect of current investment requirements, railroads would invest about $24.5 billion in 2013 according to AAR. This figures project an escalating trend when compared with recorded investment of $23 billion in 2012 and $12 billion in 2011 as per AAR.
Given the growing demand and need to upgrade railroad infrastructure to meet new regulations, deployment of fuel-efficient locomotives, upcoming rules on track sharing, railroad safety and high-speed rail services make it mandatory for railroads to infuse more capital on development projects. According to DOT, almost 90% of the railway capacity needs to be upgraded to meet the expected rise in demand level by 2035. Hence, for railroads it is important to balance profitability levels while investing in infrastructural development projects.
Currently, the U.S. railroad industry dominates less than 50% of total freight in America , indicating a huge opportunity for increasing market share. This opportunity can only be exploited by building railroad infrastructure that caters to the varied requirements of shippers.
The railroad industry as a whole offers a number of opportunities that are difficult to ignore from the standpoint of investors.
Discretionary Pricing Power: The freight railroad operators function in a seller s market and have enjoyed pricing power since 1980, when the U.S. government adopted the Staggers Rail Act. The idea was to allow rail transporters to hike prices on captive shippers like electric utilities, chemical and agricultural companies in order to improve profitability of the struggling railroad industry. As a result, of the Staggers Rail Act, railroads are hiking their freight rates by nearly 5% per annum on average, while maintaining a double-digit profit margin.
Duopolistic Market Structures: Railroads have by and large gained by practicing discretionary pricing in the freight market. In the prevailing duopolistic rail industry, railroad operators will be able to reap maximum benefits from rising prices when the overall demand grows.
This remains evident from the geographic distribution of markets between major railroads. Union Pacific and Burlington Northern Santa Fe control the western part of the U.S., while CSX Corp. and Norfolk Southern control the eastern part. On the other hand, Canadian Pacific and Canadian National control inter country rail shipment between the U.S. and Canada.
Despite the above mentioned positives, the freight railroad industry, like other industries, faces certain external and internal challenges. These are as follows:
Capital Intensive Nature: Railroad is a highly capital intensive industry that requires continued infrastructural improvements and acquisition of capital assets. Moreover, industry players access the credit markets for funds from time to time. Adverse conditions in credit markets could increase overhead costs associated with issuing debt, and may limit the companies ability to sell debt securities on favorable terms.
Positive Train Control Mandate: The Rail Safety Improvement Act 2008 (RSIA) has mandated the installation of PTC (Positive Train Control) by Dec 31, 2015 on main lines that carry certain hazardous materials and on lines that involve passenger operations. The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) issued its final rule in Jan 2010, on the design, operational requirements and implementation of the new technology. The final rule is expected to impose significant new costs for the rail industry at large.
Price Regulations: The pricing practices of U.S. freight railroads are the major reasons of friction with captive shippers, who move their products through rail and do not have effective alternatives. According to the latest studies by the STB, approximately 35% of the annual freight rail is captive to a single railroad, allowing it monopoly pricing practices.
The unfair pricing power exhibited by the U.S. railroads has attracted congressional intervention for exercising stringent federal regulations on railroads. Congress has discussed railroad price regulation but has not passed any new rule so far.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency: Railroads remain concerned about the proposed regulation by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for power plants across 27 states. The proposed guideline Carbon Pollution Standard for New Power Plants aims at restricting emission of carbon dioxide by new power plants under Section 111 of the Clean Air Act. The standard proposes new power plants to limit their carbon-dioxide emission to 1,000 pounds per megawatt-hour.
Power plants fueled by natural gas have already met these standards but the majority of the units using conventional resources like coal are exceeding the set limit, as they emit an average of 1,800 pounds of carbon-dioxide per megawatt-hour. Railroads, which transport nearly two-thirds of the coal shipment, are most likely to be impacted by the implementation of the new regulation that could pose a significant threat to utility coal tonnage.
- ^ UNP (www.zacks.com)
- ^ Analyst Report (www.zacks.com)
- ^ CSX (www.zacks.com)
- ^ Analyst Report (www.zacks.com)
- ^ Analyst Report (www.zacks.com)
- ^ KSU (www.zacks.com)
- ^ Analyst Report (www.zacks.com)
- ^ NSC (www.zacks.com)
- ^ Analyst Report (www.zacks.com)
- ^ CNI (www.zacks.com)
- ^ Analyst Report (www.zacks.com)
- ^ HMC (www.zacks.com)
- ^ NSANY (www.zacks.com)
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Main article: History of road transport
The first methods of road transport were horses, oxen or even humans carrying goods over dirt tracks that often followed game trails. As commerce increased, the tracks were often flattened or widened to accommodate the activities. Later, the travois, a frame used to drag loads, was developed. The wheel came still later, probably preceded by the use of logs as rollers. Early stone-paved roads were built in Mesopotamia and the Indus Valley Civilization. The Persians later built a network of Royal Roads across their empire.
With the advent of the Roman Empire, there was a need for armies to be able to travel quickly from one area to another, and the roads that existed were often muddy, which greatly delayed the movement of large masses of troops. To resolve this issue, the Romans built great roads. The Roman roads used deep roadbeds of crushed stone as an underlying layer to ensure that they kept dry, as the water would flow out from the crushed stone, instead of becoming mud in clay soils. The Islamic Caliphate later built tar-paved roads in Baghdad.1
During the Industrial Revolution, and because of the increased commerce that came with it, improved roadways became imperative. The problem was rain combined with dirt roads created commerce-miring mud. John Loudon McAdam (1756 1836) designed the first modern highways. He developed an inexpensive paving material of soil and stone aggregate (known as macadam), and he embanked roads a few feet higher than the surrounding terrain to cause water to drain away from the surface. At the same time, Thomas Telford, made substantial advances in the engineering of new roads and the construction of bridges, particularly, the London to Holyhead road.
Various systems had been developed over centuries to reduce bogging and dust in cities, including cobblestones and wooden paving. Tar-bound macadam (tarmac) was applied to macadam roads towards the end of the 19th century in cities such as Paris. In the early 20th century tarmac and concrete paving were extended into the countryside.
A public transport bus
Transport on roads can be roughly grouped into two categories: transportation of goods and transportation of people. In many countries licencing requirements and safety regulations ensure a separation of the two industries.
The nature of road transportation of goods depends, apart from the degree of development of the local infrastructure, on the distance the goods are transported by road, the weight and volume of the individual shipment and the type of goods transported. For short distances and light, small shipments a van or pickup truck may be used. For large shipments even if less than a full truckload a truck is more appropriate. (Also see Trucking and Hauling below). In some countries cargo is transported by road in horse-drawn carriages, donkey carts or other non-motorized mode. Delivery services are sometimes considered a separate category from cargo transport. In many places fast food is transported on roads by various types of vehicles. For inner city delivery of small packages and documents bike couriers are quite common.
People are transported on roads either in individual cars or automobiles, or in mass transit by bus or coach. Special modes of individual transport by road like rickshaws or velotaxis may also be locally available.
Trucking and hauling
Trucking companies (AE) or haulers/hauliers (BE) accept cargo for road transport. Truck drivers operate either independently working directly for the client or through freight carriers or shipping agents. Some big companies (e.g. grocery store chains) operate their own internal trucking operations. The market size for general freight trucking was nearly $125 billion in 2010. Since 2005, the trucking industry has decreased by 1%.2
In the U.S. many truckers own their truck (rig), and are known as owner-operators. Some road transportation is done on regular routes or for only one consignee per run, while others transport goods from many different loading stations/shippers to various consignees. On some long runs only cargo for one leg of the route (to) is known when the cargo is loaded. Truckers may have to wait at the destination for the return cargo (from).
A bill of lading issued by the shipper provides the basic document for road freight. On cross-border transportation the trucker will present the cargo and documentation provided by the shipper to customs for inspection (for EC see also Schengen Agreement). This also applies to shipments that are transported out of a Free port.
To avoid accidents caused by fatigue, truckers have to keep to strict rules for drivetime and required rest periods. In the United States and Canada, these regulations are known as hours of service, and in the European Union as drivers working hours. One such regulation is the Hours of Work and Rest Periods (Road Transport) Convention, 1979.3Tachographs record the times the vehicle is in motion and stopped. Some companies use two drivers per truck to ensure uninterrupted transportation; with one driver resting or sleeping in a bunk in the back of the cab while the other is driving.
For transport of hazardous materials (see dangerous goods) truckers need a licence, which usually requires them to pass an exam (e.g. in the EU). They have to make sure they affix proper labels for the respective hazard(s) to their vehicle. Liquid goods are transported by road in tank trucks (AE) or tanker lorries (BE) (also road-tankers) or special tankcontainers for intermodal transport. For unpackaged goods and liquids weigh stations confirm weight after loading and before delivery. For transportation of live animals special requirements have to be met in many countries to prevent cruelty to animals (see animal rights). For fresh and frozen goods refrigerator trucks or reefer (container)s are used.
In Australia road trains replace rail transport for goods on routes throughout the center of the country. B-doubles and semi-trailers are used in urban areas because of their smaller size. Low-loader or flat-bed trailers are used to haul containers, see containerization, in intermodal transport.
Today roadways are principally asphalt or concrete. Both are based on McAdam’s concept of stone aggregate in a binder, asphalt cement or Portland cement respectively. Asphalt is known as a flexible pavement, one which slowly will “flow” under the pounding of traffic. Concrete is a rigid pavement, which can take heavier loads but is more expensive and requires more carefully prepared subbase. So, generally, major roads are concrete and local roads are asphalt. Often concrete roads are covered with a thin layer of asphalt to create a wearing surface.
Modern pavements are designed for heavier vehicle loads and faster speeds, requiring thicker slabs and deeper subbase. Subbase is the layer or successive layers of stone, gravel and sand supporting the pavement. It is needed to spread out the slab load bearing on the underlying soil and to conduct away any water getting under the slabs. Water will undermine a pavement over time, so much of pavement and pavement joint design are meant to minimize the amount of water getting and staying under the slabs.
Shoulders are also an integral part of highway design. They are multipurpose; they can provide a margin of side clearance, a refuge for incapacitated vehicles, an emergency lane, and parking space. They also serve a design purpose, and that is to prevent water from percolating into the soil near the main pavement’s edge. Shoulder pavement is designed to a lower standard than the pavement in the traveled way and won’t hold up as well to traffic. (Which is why driving on the shoulder is generally prohibited.)
Pavement technology is still evolving, albeit in not easily noticed increments. For instance, chemical additives in the pavement mix make the pavement more weather resistant, grooving and other surface treatments improve resistance to skidding and hydroplaning, and joint seals which were once tar are now made of low maintenance neoprene.
See also: Road traffic safety
Nearly all roadways are built with devices meant to control traffic. Most notable to the motorist are those meant to communicate directly with the driver. Broadly, these fall into three categories: signs, signals or pavement markings. They help the driver navigate; they assign the right-of-way at intersections; they indicate laws such as speed limits and parking regulations; they advise of potential hazards; they indicate passing and no passing zones; and otherwise deliver information and to assure traffic is orderly and safe.
200 years ago these devices were signs, nearly all informal. In the late 19th century signals began to appear in the biggest cities at a few highly congested intersections. They were manually operated, and consisted of semaphores, flags or paddles, or in some cases colored electric lights, all modeled on railroad signals. In the 20th century signals were automated, at first with electromechanical devices and later with computers. Signals can be quite sophisticated: with vehicle sensors embedded in the pavement, the signal can control and choreograph the turning movements of heavy traffic in the most complex of intersections. In the 1920s traffic engineers learned how to coordinate signals along a thoroughfare to increase its speeds and volumes. In the 1980s, with computers, similar coordination of whole networks became possible.
In the 1920s pavement markings were introduced. Initially they were used to indicate the road’s centerline. Soon after they were coded with information to aid motorists in passing safely. Later, with multi-lane roads they were used to define lanes. Other uses, such as indicating permitted turning movements and pedestrian crossings soon followed.
In the 20th century traffic control devices were standardized. Before then every locality decided on what its devices would look like and where they would be applied. This could be confusing, especially to traffic from outside the locality. In the United States standardization was first taken at the state level, and late in the century at the federal level. Each country has a Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) and there are efforts to blend them into a worldwide standard.
Besides signals, signs, and markings, other forms of traffic control are designed and built into the roadway. For instance, curbs and rumble strips can be used to keep traffic in a given lane and median barriers can prevent left turns and even U-turns.
Main article: Toll road
Early toll roads were usually built by private companies under a government franchise. They typically paralleled or replaced routes already with some volume of commerce, hoping the improved road would divert enough traffic to make the enterprise profitable. Plank roads were particularly attractive as they greatly reduced rolling resistance and mitigated the problem of getting mired in mud. Another improvement, better grading to lessen the steepness of the worst stretches, allowed draft animals to haul heavier loads.
A toll road in the United States is often called a turnpike. The term turnpike probably originated from the gate, often a simple pike, which blocked passage until the fare was paid at a toll house (or toll booth in current terminology). When the toll was paid the pike, which was mounted on a swivel, was turned to allow the vehicle to pass. Tolls were usually based on the type of cargo being transported, not the type of vehicle. The practice of selecting routes so as to avoid tolls is called shunpiking. This may be simply to avoid the expense, as a form of economic protest (or boycott), or simply to seek a road less traveled as a bucolic interlude.
Companies were formed to build, improve, and maintain a particular section of roadway, and tolls were collected from users to finance the enterprise. The enterprise was usually named to indicate the locale of its roadway, often including the name of one of both of the termini. The word turnpike came into common use in the names of these roadways and companies, and is essentially used interchangeably with toll road in current terminology.
Toll roads peaked in the mid 19th century, and by the turn of the twentieth century most toll roads were taken over by state highway departments. The demise of this early toll road era was due to the rise of canals and railroads, which were more efficient (and thus cheaper) in moving freight over long distances. Roads wouldn’t again be competitive with rails and barges until the first half of the 20th century when the internal combustion engine replaces draft animals as the source of motive power.
With the development, mass production, and popular embrace of the automobile, faster and higher capacity roads were needed. In the 1920s limited access highways appeared. Their main characteristics were dual roadways with access points limited to (but not always) grade-separated interchanges. Their dual roadways allowed high volumes of traffic, the need for no or few traffic lights along with relatively gentle grades and curves allowed higher speeds.
The first limited access highways were Parkways, so called because of their often park-like landscaping and, in the metropolitan New York City area, they connected the region’s system of parks. When the German autobahns built in the 1930s introduced higher design standards and speeds, road planners and road-builders in the United States started developing and building toll roads to similar high standards. The Pennsylvania Turnpike, which largely followed the path of a partially built railroad, was the first, opening in 1940.
After 1940 with the Pennsylvania Turnpike, toll roads saw a resurgence, this time to fund limited access highways. In the late 1940s and early 1950s, after World War II interrupted the evolution of the highway, the US resumed building toll roads. They were to still higher standards and one road, the New York State Thruway, had standards that became the prototype for the U.S. Interstate Highway System. Several other major toll-roads which connected with the Pennsylvania Turnpike were established before the creation of the Interstate Highway System. These were the Indiana Toll Road, Ohio Turnpike, and New Jersey Turnpike.
Interstate Highway System
Main article: Interstate Highway System
In the United States, beginning in 1956, Dwight D. Eisenhower National System of Interstate and Defense Highways, commonly called the Interstate Highway System was built. It uses 12 foot (3.65m) lanes, wide medians, a maximum of 4% grade, and full access control, though many sections don’t meet these standards due to older construction or constraints. This system created a continental-sized network meant to connect every population center of 50,000 people or more.
By 1956, most limited access highways in the eastern United States were toll roads. In that year, the federal Interstate highway program was established, funding non-toll roads with 90% federal dollars and 10% state match, giving little incentive for states to expand their turnpike system. Funding rules initially restricted collections of tolls on newly funded roadways, bridges, and tunnels. In some situations, expansion or rebuilding of a toll facility using Interstate Highway Program funding resulted in the removal of existing tolls. This occurred in Virginia on Interstate 64 at the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel when a second parallel roadway to the regional 1958 bridge-tunnel was completed in 1976.
Since the completion of the initial portion of the interstate highway system, regulations were changed, and portions of toll facilities have been added to the system. Some states are again looking at toll financing for new roads and maintenance, to supplement limited federal funding. In some areas, new road projects have been completed with public-private partnerships funded by tolls, such as the Pocahontas Parkway (I-895) near Richmond, Virginia.
The newest policy passed by Congress and the Obama Administration regarding highways is the Surface and Air Transportation Programs Extension Act of 2011.
Main article: Tire
As the horse-drawn carriage was replaced by the car and lorry or truck, and speeds increased, the need for smoother roads and less vertical displacement became more apparent, and pneumatic tires were developed to decrease the apparent roughness. Wagon and carriage wheels, made of wood, had a tire in the form of an iron strip that kept the wheel from wearing out quickly. Pneumatic tires, which had a larger footprint than iron tires, also were less likely to get bogged down in the mud on unpaved roads.
Road transport and the environment
Main article: Environmental impact of roads
- AETR (Tachograph regulations in the EU)
- German autobahns
- Neo-bulk cargo
- Right- and left-hand traffic
- ^ “Road Transportation A History and How We Use it Today”. American Auto Move. 30 August 2012. http://www.americanautomove.com/information/road-transportation-a-history-and-how-we-use-it-today/. Retrieved 12 September 2012.
- ^ “General Freight Trucking Industry Statistics, Market Research, and Financial Ratios”. Pell Research. http://www.pellresearch.com/General-Freight-Trucking.htm.
- ^ “What do we want to achieve ?”. European Comission. 19 June 2012. http://ec.europa.eu/transport/road/index_en.htm. Retrieved 11 September 2012.
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- NPOV disputes from March 2009
- All NPOV disputes
A group of Tesla Model S owners, charged up over a recent New York Times column that challenged the reliability of the electric vehicle, hit the road this weekend to replicate the same drive the Times reporter made.
One of the Tesla S Road Trip cars, at a charging station in Milford, Conn.
But not all of the starting nine completed the entire drive, for varying reasons.
I happened to cross paths with them today at a highway rest stop in Milford, Conn., where I saw the Teslas charging and found the owners sitting inside at a Dunkin Donuts. They were on their way back home.
At the rest stop, Tesla owner Aaron Schildkraut told me they had followed the same route the Times John Broder did, making pit stops in Newark, Del., and again in Milford, to super-charge their electric vehicles.
In case you haven t been following the saga and are curious as to why these people would want to spend President s Day weekend hanging out at rest stops: On Feb. 8, the New York Times ran a column titled Stalled Out on Tesla s Electric Highway 2, that recounted a less-than-positive experience with the Tesla Model S, an award-winning electric vehicle that claims a 256-mile-per-charge estimated range. Broder s car battery died during the test drive.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk took to Twitter to call the Times piece a fake3, and followed up with a blog post4 that his supporters said backed up his assertion. Then Broder responded with a blog post of his own5. Short version: If you re a big Tesla fan, you don t believe the Times. Lots of other people do.
The Tesla Road Trip folks aren t the first to jump at the opportunity to mimic Broder s drive. Last week, a reporter from CNN made the drive from Washington, D.C., to Boston without needing the help of a flatbed truck, although, as the reporter wrote, the trip was not anxiety-free6.
The Tesla Road Trip drivers, hanging out inside the rest stop while they wait for their cars to finish charging.
None of the Tesla Road Trip cars have run out of juice, the group said. But the trip was not without incident: One driver s Tesla S stopped working at the Delaware charging station, due to what they believe was faulty circuitry. The owner called Tesla support, the group said, and a software update was pushed to his car remotely, allowing him to drive it to Milford.
Tesla has not yet responded to a request for comment about that vehicle s troubles.
In total, only four of the original nine Tesla S drivers stuck it out for the whole trip, from Rockville to Groton and back south. Some opted out early on, in Delaware. Another driver, during the first leg of the trip, chose to stay in New York City and see a Broadway play.
I think Broder s biggest problem was that he didn t charge his car fully, one of the drivers, Dante Richardson, opined. You wouldn t fill up your car with gas for 50 miles if you were taking a 100-mile road trip.
The group said their trip was not commissioned or sponsored by Tesla, although they said Tesla vice president of sales George Blankenship contacted them after hearing about the mission.
We FaceTimed with him during the drive, said driver Lanny Hartmann, who spearheaded most of the group s social media efforts.
- ^ live-tweeting telemetry updates (twitter.com)
- ^ Stalled Out on Tesla s Electric Highway (www.nytimes.com)
- ^ fake (twitter.com)
- ^ blog post (www.teslamotors.com)
- ^ with a blog post of his own (wheels.blogs.nytimes.com)
- ^ although, as the reporter wrote, the trip was not anxiety-free (money.cnn.com)
- ^ were going 65 miles per hour (twitter.com)
Vega camper and counselor on Opening Day 2012
Although June may seem far away, the days are getting longer and there are only 125 until camp! Before you know it, your bags will be packed and you ll be ready to go. We want your arrival on opening day to be fun and easy. One important way we make that happen is by getting your bags unpacked for you before you arrive.
We use a company called Camp Trucking to pick your bags at your house and deliver them directly to you bunk. There your counselors neatly unpack your items into your cubby, shelf and bed. Camp Trucking picks up all over the continental US, and is the most efficient and cost effective way to get your items to camp.
Camp Trucking recently told us that their website, www.camptrucking.com1, is open for registration for this summer, and they are starting to plan logistics to pick up everyone s bags. Please visit their website and to register online and learn more about their services.
Please let us, or Camp Trucking know if we can assist you.
Thank you and have a great weekend!
Kyle and Emily
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Huffington Post1A gunman holed up in a bunker with a 5-year-old hostage kept law officers at bay Wednesday in an all-night, all-day standoff that began when he killed a school bus driver and dragged the boy away, authorities said.
SWAT teams took up positions around the gunman’s rural property and police negotiators tried to win the kindergartener’s safe release.
The situation remained unchanged late Wednesday, with negotiations ongoing, Alabama State Trooper Charles Dysart told a news conference. He said no additional information would be released until Thursday morning.
The gunman, identified by neighbors as Jimmy Lee Dykes, a 65-year-old retired truck driver, was known around the neighborhood as a menacing figure who once beat a dog to death with a lead pipe, threatened to shoot children for setting foot on his property and patrolled his yard at night with a flashlight and a shotgun.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Jump to: navigation, search This article is about transported goods. For other uses, see Cargo (disambiguation). “Freight” redirects here. For the price paid in a voyage charter, see Freight rate. Cargo being unloaded from a ship using a cargo net at Haikou New Port, Haikou City, Hainan, China
Cargo (or freight) is goods or produce transported, generally for commercial gain, by ship or aircraft, although the term is now extended to intermodal train, van or truck. In modern times, containers are used in most long-haul cargo transport.
Container ship at the Port of Helsinki in Finland
- Automobiles are handled at many ports and are usually carried on specialized roll-on/roll-off ships.
- Break bulk cargo is typically material stacked on pallets and lifted into and out of the hold of a vessel by cranes on the dock or aboard the ship itself. The volume of break bulk cargo has declined dramatically worldwide as containerization has grown. One way to secure break bulk and freight in intermodal containers is by using Dunnage Bags.
- Bulk cargo, such as salt, oil, tallow, and scrap metal, is usually defined as commodities that are neither on pallets nor in containers. Bulk cargoes are not handled as individual pieces, the way heavy-lift and project cargoes are. Alumina, grain, gypsum, logs, and wood chips, for instance, are bulk cargoes.
- Neo-bulk cargo comprises individual units that are counted as they are loaded and unloaded, in contrast to bulk cargo that is not counted, but that are not containerized.1
- Containers are the largest and fastest growing cargo category at most ports worldwide. Containerized cargo includes everything from auto parts, machinery and manufacturing components to shoes and toys to frozen meat and seafood.
- Project cargo and the heavy lift cargo include items like manufacturing equipment, air conditioners, factory components, generators, wind turbines, military equipment, and almost any other oversized or overweight cargo which is too big or too heavy to fit into a container.
Air cargo, commonly known as air freight, is collected by firms from shippers and delivered to customers. Aircraft were first used for carrying mail as cargo in 1911. Eventually manufacturers started designing aircraft for other types of freight as well.
There are many commercial aircraft suitable for carrying cargo such as the Boeing 747 and the bigger An 124, which was purposely built for easy conversion into a cargo aircraft. Such large aircraft employ quick-loading containers known as unit load devices (ULDs), much like containerized cargo ships. The ULDs are located in the front section of the aircraft.
Most nations own and utilize large numbers of military cargo aircraft such as the C 17 Globemaster III for logistical needs.
Trains are capable of transporting large numbers of containers that come from shipping ports. Trains are also used for the transportation of steel, wood and coal. They are used because they can carry a large amount and generally have a direct route to the destination. Under the right circumstances, freight transport by rail is more economic and energy efficient than by road, especially when carried in bulk or over long distances.
The main disadvantage of rail freight is its lack of flexibility. For this reason, rail has lost much of the freight business to road transport. Rail freight is often subject to transshipment costs, since it must be transferred from one mode of transportation to another. Practices such as containerization aim at minimizing these costs.
Many governments are currently trying to encourage shippers to use trains more often because of the environmental benefits.2
Main article: Truck
Many firms, like Parcelforce, FedEx and R+L Carriers transport all types of cargo by road. Delivering everything from letters to houses to cargo containers, these firms offer fast, sometimes same-day, delivery.
A good example of road cargo is food, as supermarkets require deliveries every day to keep their shelves stocked with goods. Retailers of all kinds rely upon delivery trucks, be they full size semi trucks or smaller delivery vans.
Freight is usually organized into various shipment categories before it is transported. An item’s category is determined by:
- the type of item being carried. For example, a kettle could fit into the category ‘household goods’.
- how large the shipment is, in terms of both item size and quantity.
- how long the item for delivery will be in transit.
Shipments are typically categorized as household goods, express, parcel, and freight shipments:
- Household goods (HHG) include furniture, art and similar items.
- Very small business or personal items like envelopes are considered overnight express or express letter shipments. These shipments are rarely over a few kilograms or pounds and almost always travel in the carrier s own packaging. Express shipments almost always travel some distance by air. An envelope may go coast to coast in the United States overnight or it may take several days, depending on the service options and prices chosen by the shipper.
- Larger items like small boxes are considered parcels or ground shipments. These shipments are rarely over 50 kg (110 lb), with no single piece of the shipment weighing more than about 70 kg (154 lb). Parcel shipments are always boxed, sometimes in the shipper s packaging and sometimes in carrier-provided packaging. Service levels are again variable but most ground shipments will move about 800 to 1,100 kilometres (497 to 684 mi) per day. Depending on the origin of the package, it can travel from coast to coast in the United States in about four days. Parcel shipments rarely travel by air and typically move via road and rail. Parcels represent the majority of business-to-consumer (B2C) shipments.
- Beyond HHG, express, and parcel shipments, movements are termed freight shipments.
Main article: Less than truckload shipping
Less than truckload (LTL) cargo is the first category of freight shipment, which represents the majority of freight shipments and the majority of business-to-business (B2B) shipments. LTL shipments are also often referred to as motor freight and the carriers involved are referred to as motor carriers.
LTL shipments range from 50 to 7,000 kg (110 to 15,000 lb), being less than 2.5 to 8.5 m (8 ft 2.4 in to 27 ft 10.6 in) the majority of times. The average single piece of LTL freight is 600 kg (1,323 lb) and the size of a standard pallet. Long freight and/or large freight are subject to extreme length and cubic capacity surcharges.
Trailers used in LTL can range from 28 to 53 ft (8.53 to 16.15 m). The standard for city deliveries is usually 48 ft (14.63 m). In tight and residential environments the 28 ft (8.53 m) trailer is used the most.
The shipments are usually palletized, stretch shrink-wrapped and packaged for a mixed-freight environment. Unlike express or parcel, LTL shippers must provide their own packaging, as carriers do not provide any packaging supplies or assistance. However, circumstances may require crating or other substantial packaging.
Air freight shipments are very similar to LTL shipments in terms of size and packaging requirements. However, air freight or air cargo shipments typically need to move at much faster speeds than 800 km or 497 mi per day. Air shipments may be booked directly with the carriers, through brokers or with online marketplace services. While shipments move faster than standard LTL, air shipments don t always actually move by air.
In the United States, shipments larger than about 7,000 kg (15,432 lb) are typically classified as truckload (TL) freight. This is because it is more efficient and economical for a large shipment to have exclusive use of one larger trailer rather than share space on a smaller LTL trailer.
The total weight of a loaded truck (tractor and trailer, 5-axle rig) cannot exceed 36,000 kg (79,366 lb) in the United Statesfact. In ordinary circumstances, long-haul equipment will weigh about 15,000 kg (33,069 lb), leaving about 20,000 kg (44,092 lb) of freight capacity. Similarly a load is limited to the space available in the trailer, normally 48 ft (14.63 m) or 53 ft (16.15 m) long, 2.6 m (102.4 in) wide, 2.7 m (8 ft 10.3 in) high and 13 ft 6 in/4.11 m high over all.
While express, parcel and LTL shipments are always intermingled with other shipments on a single piece of equipment and are typically reloaded across multiple pieces of equipment during their transport, TL shipments usually travel as the only shipment on a trailer. In fact, TL shipments usually deliver on exactly the same trailer as they are picked up on.
Often, an LTL shipper may realize savings by utilizing a freight broker, online marketplace or other intermediary, instead of contracting directly with a trucking company. Brokers can shop the marketplace and obtain lower rates than most smaller shippers can obtain directly. In the LTL marketplace, intermediaries typically receive 50% to 80% discounts from published rates, where a small shipper may only be offered a 5% to 30% discount by the carrier. Intermediaries are licensed by the DOT and have requirements to provide proof of insurance.
Truckload (TL) carriers usually charge a rate per kilometre or mile. The rate varies depending on the distance, geographic location of the delivery, items being shipped, equipment type required, and service times required. TL shipments usually receive a variety of surcharges very similar to those described for LTL shipments above. In the TL market, there are thousands more small carriers than in the LTL market. Therefore, the use of transportation intermediaries or brokers is extremely common.
Another cost-saving method is facilitating pickups or deliveries at the carrier s terminals. By doing this, shippers avoid any accessorial fees that might normally be charged for liftgate, residential pickup/delivery, inside pickup/delivery, or notifications/appointments. Carriers or intermediaries can provide shippers with the address and phone number for the closest shipping terminal to the origin and/or destination.
Shipping experts optimize their service and costs by sampling rates from several carriers, brokers and online marketplaces. When obtaining rates from different providers, shippers may find quite a wide range in the pricing offered. If a shipper uses a broker, freight forwarder or other transportation intermediary, it is common for the shipper to receive a copy of the carrier’s Federal Operating Authority. Freight brokers and intermediaries are also required by Federal Law to be licensed by the Federal Highway Administration. Experienced shippers avoid unlicensed brokers and forwarders because if brokers are working outside the law by not having a Federal Operating License, the shipper has no protection in the event of a problem. Also, shippers normally ask for a copy of the broker’s insurance certificate and any specific insurance that applies to the shipment.
Governments are very concerned with the shipment of cargo, as it may bring security risks to a country. Therefore, many governments have enacted rules and regulations, administered by a customs agency, to the handling of cargo to minimize risks of terrorism and other crime. Of particular concern is cargo entering through a country’s borders.
The United States has been one of the leaders in securing cargo. They see cargo as a concern to national security. After the terrorist attacks of September 11th, the security of this magnitude of cargo has become highlighted on the over 6 million cargo containers enter the United States ports each year.3 The latest US Government response to this threat is the CSI: Container Security Initiative. CSI is a program intended to help increase security for containerized cargo shipped to the United States from around the world.4 Europe is also focusing on this issue, with a number of EU-funded projects underway.5
There are many different ways and materials available to stabilize and secure cargo in the various modes of transportation. Conventional load securing methods and materials such as steel strapping and plastic/wood blocking & bracing have been used for decades and are still widely used. Present load securing methods offer several other options including polyester strapping and lashing, synthetic webbings and dunnage bags, also known as air bags or inflatable bags.
Application in container
Polyester Strapping and Dunnage Bag application
Polyester Lashing Application
- Goods train
- IATA e-freight
- Owner Operator Independent Drivers Association
- Standard Carrier Alpha Codes
- Document automation in supply chain management & logistics
- ^ CambridgeSystematics 1998, pp. 79.
- ^ http://www.mjc2.com/e-freight-logistics.htm EU-sponsored promotion of rail and barge
- ^ Murray Unveils First-in-the-Nation Port Security Demonstration
- ^ CSI: Container Security Initiative
- ^ http://www.mjc2.com/container-logistics-security-optimization.htm CONTAIN – container security optimization
- * Cambridge Systematics (1998). Multimodal corridor and capacity analysis manual. Transportation Research Board. ISBN 978-0-309-06072-1.
Look up cargo in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.
Retrieved from “http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Cargo&oldid=529372065” Categories:
One year after a car carrying San Juan Capistrano teacher Kelli Groves and her two daughters dangled perilously from a Santa Barbara County bridge, her family has sued the trucking company over the deadly accident.
On Jan. 12, 2012, Groves was driving her then-10-year-old daughter, Sage, and 10-week-old girl, Mylo, to Mission San Luis Obispo when the 2001 BMW she had borrowed was clipped from behind by a big rig owned by R&R Auto Wrecking of Arroyo Grande1.
The truck went barreling over the side of a bridge just south of Buellton, sending driver Charles Allison Jr. to his death. Groves car somehow managed to jam into the railing, but was left hanging off the bridge.
Their rescue is a story of one miracle after another that attracted worldwide attention2 after a battalion of Navy Seabees happened on the scene with the perfect, heavy-duty forklift needed to stabilize the car, allowing firefighters to extricate the girls and their mom.
In a lawsuit filed last week in San Luis Obispo County, lawyers for the Groves family want to hold the trucking company responsible for negligence in maintaining and operating the truck and hiring Allison as a driver.
R&R Auto Wrecking couldn’t be reached for comment.
That Allison was driving a tractor-trailer truck while high on methamphetamine was willful, deliberate, intentional, reckless, despicable, the lawsuit states.
Sadly, the driver of the big rig involved in this collision had a long history of drug and illegal substance abuse, said Wylie Aitken, one of the Santa Ana-based lawyers handling the case for the Groves.
Aitken said Allison had several previous run-ins with the law for drug possession and driving under the influence.
It is shocking that a trucking company would even hire and allow someone suffering from such addiction problems to drive a vehicle capable of so much harm to others, Aitken said.
The suit does not name a specific dollar amount sought for damages but does indicate Groves and her daughters suffered severe injuries and said Groves was unable to return to her teaching job at Del Obispo Elementary4.