New Technology To Reduce Border Delays

In 2011, there were announcements about the latest partnership between the United States and Canada, Beyond the Border Action Plan.

This collaboration demonstrates both Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s and President Barack Obama’s commitment to a healthy economy. With this plan, both Canada and The United States decided to install “wait time measurement technology” at the busiest twenty border crossings between the respective countries. This is to promote and encourage healthy import and export between the two nations.

Attorney General Robert Nicholson announced the potential installation of this very equipment recently on both the Peace and Queenston-Lewiston Bridges. Nicholson says that this type of system will allow drivers to make more informed decisions about the fastest border crossings, decreasing the time of each border crossing. It has been further anticipated that this entire new system will reduce the wait times at all the Canadian/US border crossings by as much as one million hours per year. This improvement in wait times will affect the public’s time waiting to cross the border, and not just trucks crossing the border for business.

The new sensors will be built near approach roads and crossing plazas to measure delays. These delays are then transmitted further back down the road in real time to give drivers the ability to possibly avoid a delay and choose a momentary less busy crossing point. There are many other benefits to this system besides just saving the drivers’ time. Border agencies will be better equipped to manage the volume of incoming traffic because the data gathered from the sensors will allow them to track and plan accordingly.

By gathering reliable information from the sensors, the border agencies will also be better able to more effectively distribute manpower and put an even greater emphasis on security. And cutting down on delays and traffic jams will automatically improve the emission counts, which will always be better for the environment.

The Canadian Trucking Alliance was very enthusiastic about these developments claiming that Canada’s promise to further invest in more border infrastructure can only improve the system even more. The Canadian Trucking Alliance’s Senior Vice President, Stephen Lakowski says “the opening of new bridges and additional truck lanes are critical to the ability of Canadian manufacturers to ensure that their goods get to the US customers on time.” He also says “this new technology will further assist the trucking industry in becoming more efficient in making international deliveries.”

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