Sunday, March 6, 2011

New App To Minimise Crime And Delays For European Freight Haulage Groups

Seven Countries Band Together to Aid Commercial Operators
Shipping News Feature

EUROPE – The North Sea Region Programme is helping fund the development of a mobile app to assist commercial hauliers in transit with advice on safe parking areas away from districts subject to lorry thefts and freight crime plus advising them on road conditions and directions plus local traffic regulations for commercial trucks.

The seven North Sea Region countries (Sweden, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, the Flemish Region of Belgium, the UK and Norway) all of which border the North Sea, control a ‘B Strand’ Interreg programme focused on encouraging and supporting transnational cooperation in the North Sea Region.

The six EU members and Norway have joined together with partners ranging from the Volvo Technology Corporation and international police and crime intelligence forces to two UK universities, radio frequency identification (RFID) experts like Avonwood Technologies and internet specialists Internal Systems Limited (ISL) to create an app useable from any mobile smart phone or other GPS capable in-vehicle device.

Whereas with previous systems there were high investment costs for logistics operators who had to install individual technology in each truck with central controls for communications and tracking vehicle movements the North Sea Freight Intelligent Transport Solution (NS FRITS) is easily accessible using 3G, GPRS, Wi-Fi, or satellite communications for wider geographical reach.

The driver of a freight truck can utilise multi-lingual instructions and advice delivered in audio, text, graphical and map formats giving latest traffic updates, lorry specific road and weather conditions, foreign laws and route planning data plus advice on safe parking areas to help protect driver, vehicle and cargo.

The system utilises open source technology for real-time communication to enable instant messaging, identification of a drivers' location both by driver and operator, multi-party chat and collaboration, and routing of data. The system is operated by voice command for hands-free use with development and testing of NS FRITS to be completed by December 2011 with large scale live trials of the solution scheduled over the next six months across Europe and the UK.