Opinion: Combat the congested interstates through the blockchain


After six decades of construction, the last stretch of the busiest freeway in the United States – Interstate 95 – is finally complete.

The final section of this vital road, which facilitates 40% of US gross domestic product, was inaugurated on September 24 in Mercer County, New Jersey. The project marked the end of the National Diverty Diver Eisenhower National Interstate and Defense Highways Act, approved in 1956 in the wake of the Second World War as a way to ensure the nation a road system to rely on to mobilize forces in wartime .

Rick Burnett


Today, of course, truck drivers rely on the interstate system for a completely different purpose: transporting national transport. However, the technological backbone of how vectors and chargers transmit data extends to the early days of the Interstate system.

The industry's legacy electronic data exchange system requires shippers and hauliers to facilitate loads by telephone, fax, and sometimes disorganized paper routes. Including a broker in the mix adds a third part to the equation. In this day and age, relying on an antiquated system as the EDI creates obvious inefficiencies.

To aggravate this inefficiency are the congestion truckers who come across the motorways. With the crowded streets, freight capacity and the increase in e-commerce that promises to increase demand for last mile deliveries, the current state of the national infrastructure paints a worrying picture for interstate efficiency, travel times, the economy and the environment. Without a clear timetable for when Congress will approve legislation to revitalize the nation's aging infrastructure, other solutions for road congestion and efficiency need to be pursued.

Recent innovations and implementations of blockchain technology could help solve the problems facing the trucking industry.

First, the blockchain could serve as the much needed replacement for EDI, the supply chain logistics for the digital age and big data and to address nation's congestion problems. in the process. With the blockchain, trucking logistics can be decentralized and unified through secure, transparent and instant information exchanges, helping to ensure that trucks operate at maximum efficiency.

Blockchain works by creating a decentralized network and distributing copies of a digital ledger on all the computers connected to that network, making it almost impossible to modify. Computer programs automate historical data, logging and contract execution functions that, when combined with the distributed nature of the network, create a transparent and direct peer-to-peer ecosystem to facilitate business. The association of blockchain with GPS tracking enables features such as live monitoring, geofencing and route optimization.

Unified access to big data via blockchain has the potential to revolutionize every aspect of the supply chain.

RoadSigns: podcast of transport topics

In our fourth episode of RoadSigns, we ask: what does trucking towards blockchain mean for an industry that relies on trust between business partners? Listen to a fragment of Ken Craig, vice president of special projects for McLeod Software and co-founder of Blockchain in Transport Alliance (BiTA), and get the full program by going to RoadSigns.TTNews.com.

This unified system would allow drivers to trace optimal routes based on real-time movements of other vehicles, helping them move away from slowdowns and finding alternative routes to their destinations. Blockchain can also help drivers locate backhaul loads, helping to reduce the number of kilometers traveled by trucks.

The completion of the I-95 project should reduce local short-term road congestion, but experts predict it will have little effect on overall traffic flow due to neglected infrastructure in critical hubs in the area. Ironically, there have been long disputes between federal and local legislators in the area that have delayed the project, forcing all vehicles on I-95 into the area to exit and travel miles of state roads before returning to the interstate. . This gap in New Jersey was the only disruption of the highway, which includes 1,900 miles of road that stretches from Miami to the Canadian border in Maine.

We hope that the debate on the transition from EDI is not so stubborn.

Blockchain holds the power to buy the nation a bit of time to update these crucial systems and simplify those already existing. Blockchain will not repair the American infrastructure, but it will be essential to relieve the growing pains and understand how the United States will tackle their next major transportation project.

Burnett is the founder and CEO of LaneAxis, a virtual goods management system designed to connect couriers directly to carriers. LaneAxis seeks to modernize the road haulage industry by installing a proprietary blockchain network.

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