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Mar.7, 2016

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102 THE JOURNAL OF COMMERCE 3PL REPORT: INNOVATIONS IN TECHNOLOGY SPECIAL REPORT MARCH 7.2016 An even higher level of performance is anticipated at the two automated termi- nals, TraPac in Los Angeles and Middle Harbor in Long Beach, as those facili- ties work with truckers to adjust to the new processes involved in an automated terminal. Anthony Otto, president of the terminal operator, told an HTA meeting in February that Middle Harbor should have the fastest turn times in the harbor as the terminal and trucking community adjusts to the new system this summer. Automation is considered the ulti- mate remedy for t urn-time delays because it separates street truck traffic from vessel traffic, said Larry Nye, vice president of port planning at Moffatt & Nichol. Container stacks run perpendic- ular between the vessel and the terminal gate, unlike a conventional facility where the stacks are parallel. That means trucks travel only a short distance when they enter the gate to the landside head of the stack. They remain separated from the dozens of yard trac- tors that are shuttling containers from the vessel to the waterside of the stacks. Each stack also has a mixture of loaded inbound containers, export containers and empties, allowing most truckers to drop off an export container or empty and to pick up an imported container at the same stack, Nye said. Drivers engaging in a dual transaction at the same location in the terminal have much faster turn times than the conventional method of dropping off an outbound container or empty at one stack and then proceeding to another location to receive the inbound load. Some terminals in Los Angeles- Long Beach in January continued to struggle, in most cases because of con- struction prog rams that hampered truck access or because of unusually high container volumes. The port and trucking communities expect average turn times throughout the harbor to improve in the coming year as terminal operators expand their free-f low programs, implement man- datory trucker appointment systems to manage traffic flow and share other best practices with each other. JOC Contact Bill Mongelluzzo at bill.mongelluzzo@ihs. com and follow him on Twitter: @billmongelluzzo. CHASSIS PROVIDER TRAC Intermodal and a technolog y provider have unveiled cloud-based software designed to allow intermodal equipment providers and motor carriers to automate billing and reconcile invoices. Intermodal Data Hub is a joint ven- ture of TRAC, the largest U.S. intermodal equipment provider with 278,000 active chassis, and Gary Chilo, the founder of technology developer Blocking and Tack- ling. The new platform is cloud-based Software as a Service technology. The software applies business rules and software capabilities to reconcile equipment providers' invoices against billing data imported from the motor carrier's transportation management systems. During the last several years, most intermodal chassis have been transferred from container lines, which traditionally provided them as part of a bundled ser- vice, to leasing companies that rent or lease them to motor carriers. This transfer of control has added complexity to billing for equipment providers, which now must deal with hundreds of truckers instead of a handful of container lines, and for motor carriers that must keep up with invoices from multiple chassis providers. Intermodal equipment providers have been investing in technology to deal with the change. In 2014, Direct Chassis- Link acquired REZ-1, which for 20 years has supplied technology for intermodal equipment management and service. The Intermodal Data Hub technology being offered by the TRAC joint venture is designed to reduce the workload and complexity of billing by identifying the status of each invoice. It also identifies charges from the intermodal equipment provider that haven't been invoiced or reconciled by the IEPs and motor carriers. Intermo- dal Data Hub subscribers are provided with a dashboard view of their bill- ing operations and overall chassis profitability. "We now have control of our chas- sis billing and payments," said Michael Burton, president of C&K Trucking, a Chicago-based intermodal logistics and trucking company with 700 trucks in 13 U.S. locations. The technology, he said, has lowered administrative costs, improved invoic- ing accuracy, and provided visibility and control not available previously. "When you multiply the number of pools we are involved with, with the number of steamship lines, the number of special contracts with beneficial cargo own- ers, and the various billing formats, it gets pretty complex. Not to mention that these terms change constantly," Burton said. "Intermodal Data Hub has provided a great resource and process to get con- trol and manage these costs for us and our clients." JOC "WE NOW HAVE CONTROL OF OUR CHASSIS BILLING AND PAYMENTS." CHASSIS BILLING IN THE CLOUD TRAC Intermodal teams up with technology provider to create software that automates intermodal billing

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