The main trucker advocacy group at the Port of New York and New Jersey is preparing to launch a satellite-based system to compile data on truck turn times at the port’s five main terminals in an effort to prod terminals into reducing delays.
The Association of Bi-State Motor Carriers in recent weeks has tested the system with information from 800 to 900 trucks fitted with global positioning system devices. The data are used to measure queue times outside gates and the time that vehicles spend inside terminals.
Association officials hope the data will highlight concerns about the difficulties their drivers endure when taking containers in and out of the nation’s third-busiest port. Sporadic bouts of congestion and delays in recent years have routinely increased queue and turn time at some terminals to well above an hour on the best days, and often to several hours.
“It’s not about pointing fingers, it’s about improving efficiency,” said Lisa Yakomin, spokesperson for the association. “That’s all we are looking for. We are not looking to call people out … It’s a tool for our members.”
The initiative echoes those at other ports, in particular on the West Coast, where truckers enacted GPS-based systems three years ago and have found some terminal operators responsive to problems underscored by the data. Shippers have also paid to receive the data, finding it useful in planning their supply chain.