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62 CHAPTER FIVE SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS SUMMARY OF FINDINGS (A thirteenth category accounted for "other" surveys, reported by respondents to the survey of practitioners but This synthesis has reviewed the state of the practice in freight not otherwise categorized.) transportation surveys, with a focus on truck freight in both urban and inter-urban settings. A survey of practitioners A web-based survey of practitioners was the primary and a review of case studies found that freight transporta- source of information for the synthesis. The survey was sent tion surveys, like the subject of freight transportation itself, to all state departments of transportation (DOTs), as well are complex and multifaceted. A single, all-encompassing as to selected metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs) survey or data set does not exist; and perhaps as important, that were known to be active in recent freight planning activ- there is no commonly accepted taxonomy of survey types ities. These were the primary intended audiences. To further and definitions. Different types of surveys can be used to broaden the coverage, the survey also was sent to selected develop data for a given need (e.g., several types of surveys marine and airport authorities, academics, and commercial are used to gather trip origin-destination information). Nei- freight data purveyors. In total, 74 individual agencies were ther generic survey designs nor commonly accepted sur- contacted. This generated 56 responses, including 45 state vey contents exist. Many surveys combine quantitative and DOTs and eight MPOs. The survey of practitioners solicited qualitative information-gathering: a review of recent MPO information on several topics, including survey costs, prac- and statewide freight studies indicates that although freight titioners' requirements for data, the data that are available to surveys have been conducted, many of these are qualitative. them and how these are used, and practitioners' use of ITS technologies for surveys and data collection. Practitioners The synthesis profiles 12 different types of freight trans- also were asked to assess how well the available data met portation surveys: their needs. 1. Roadside/intercept surveys The results provided a wide range of responses to virtu- ally all the questions. However, some tendencies emerged 2. Combined telephone/mail-back surveys from the state of the practice: 3. Telephone interview surveys The range of applications was broad, with the most common applications being policy and infrastructure 4. Mail-out/mail-back surveys capacity planning. Modeling was well down on the list: although data needs for modeling and forecasting were 5. Personal interview surveys cited as an important reason for this synthesis, the find- ings indicate an interest in the use of freight surveys 6. Internet surveys for many applications. The large number of "other" applications also suggests that new issues and needs 7. Focus and stakeholder group surveys are emerging and must be addressed. Trucks were the dominant mode of interest, but data 8. Commercial vehicle trip diary surveys for other modes also were of interest. There were some common elements in the type of data required for each 9. GPS vehicle tracking surveys (more broadly, ITS mode: trip origin, destination, the characteristics of the technologies) load carried, and vehicle/vessel (equipment) profiles. Additional and more specific information was required 10. License plate match surveys--manual for trucks, notably including speed and emission data. Among the 12 types of surveys, roadside/intercept sur- 11. License plate match surveys--electronic veys (i.e., the most traditional form of truck survey) were cited most frequently; however, each of the other 12.Administrative surveys types of surveys was used as well.