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61 tor, while shippers would be responsible for maximizing use of mobility constraints. These are ranked in decreasing order of trailer capacity. potential: From the labor unions' perspective, low-cost solutions to address freight mobility constraints would be those that do not Deployment of advanced technologies increase the operating expense to motor carriers, or jeopardize Train control/advanced dispatching the safety of truck drivers or the motoring public. The strate- Advanced electronic inspection techniques gies include: On-board sensors Rapid on/off maintenance of way machinery Empowering motor carriers to more efficiently use union Trunked digital communications systems drivers to suit their operational needs, which has improved Electronically controlled pneumatic brakes. carriers' ability to work around freight mobility constraints Greater emphasis on off-hours schedules for travel in both Operational/Technological Strategies: An overriding issue is rural and urban areas better communication up, down, and across the organization Lifting tractor trailer route restrictions during off-peak and to and from customers. A generic response to the survey hours, if the road can be safely traveled by large trucks, was that research on IT systems lowering capacity barriers was allowing for greater freight mobility needed, including outside-the-box thinking, and recognition Moving more freight at night. that the causes of capacity bottlenecks may be different for small and large carriers. Within the rail commodity/operating mix, there seems to be more concern about supporting carload 5.4.2 Railroads Improvement Strategies manifest service than unit trains and intermodal operations. Strategies often used to respond to rail freight mobility Contributing to this broad concern (and the specific worry constraints include: about the future of carload business) is the perceived inade- quacy of tracking systems. Suggested solutions range from Contracting out for special skills broader use of automatic car identification (ACI) readers and Hiring temporary workers an overhaul of the Car Location Message (CLM) system to Supporting labor training programs comprehensive scheduling of rail operations, including car Establishing labor/management operations planning and time at shipper locations. Existing CLM practices are out of troubleshooting teams date. Technology seen in powered consumer markets must Fast-tracking environmental clearances where possible-- find application in the rail space to ensure improved speed including with public-private partnership (PPP) projects and visibility of shipments, both load and empty, in the entire Rapid installation under traffic (which requires advance North American supply chain. There are simply too many planning and logistics support--and may involve tempo- errors, passive interchanges, track maintenance delays, etc. to rary re-routing of traffic away from the site) allow fleet optimization and utilization levels to climb aggres- Upgrading communication technologies--subject to FCC sively enough to offset the increased cost of shipping goods rules. via rail. As long as this issue is unaddressed, rail will continue to experience slow growth versus its actual utility and value. The technique of the maintenance/renewal "blitz" began It was observed that automatic equipment identification about 10 years ago on lines serving the Powder River Basin coal (AEI) readers would not be granular enough for the next gen- mines and has become widely used. The technique takes a line eration of computer aided dispatching (CAD), on-board oper- completely out of service, say for a long weekend, and then ating and computer control systems, while the level of radio with round-the-clock activity, finishes all steps in the construc- frequency identification (RFID) used for lading may be too tion process before returning the facility to normal operations. granular. Solutions will be found, like global positioning sys- In addition to track renewal, the blitz approach has been used tem (GPS) and terrestrial tracking. Capacity modeling will effectively for bridge replacements. The blitz strategy is also a become increasingly important as density increases. PTC tech- good one for making use of quality off-the-shelf products-- nologies, like moving blocks with dynamically calculated safe which may include pre-spiked track panels (of commercial or braking distances and elimination of wayside signals (a major company manufacture) distributed along the project site constraint today), are coming. Public policy can help with the before beginning the blitz. In a somewhat different context, a issues of standardization and interoperability. company- or division-wide safety blitz can quickly focus man- Public Policy/Regulatory Strategies: Respondents had numer- agement and employee attention on a safety shortcoming. ous suggestions for public policy changes that would improve The following low-cost improvements are considered to freight mobility at low cost to consumers. One respondent have high potential of implementation to address rail freight noted that