Texas introduces truck inspection system alongside I-10

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The Texas Department of Public Safety has opened a technologically advanced truck inspection facility in Seguin that spans Interstate 10.

Seguin is 36 miles east of San Antonio and is home to facilities for companies such as Caterpillar Inc. and Niagara Bottling. I-10 is a major corridor that spans the southern United States from Santa Monica, California to Jacksonville, Florida.

The Seguin Inspection Facility was designed by the Texas Department of Transportation and is located on the east side of I-10. The system includes an awning that offers space for four lanes in truck traffic.

DPS inaugurates the new Seguin inspection facility in the district of Guadalupe. It’s the most advanced inspection facility in Texas and has a 90-foot platform scale that inspectors can use to weigh an entire truck at once. pic.twitter.com/rRWsAJjPx7

– TxDPS – Central Texas Region (@TxDPSCentral) October 8, 2020

“This unique facility will benefit the trucking industry across the state of Texas and beyond and promote safety for everyone on the road,” said Steven McCraw, director of TxDPS.

The inspection facility represents a $ 1 million technology investment, including cradle-on-the-move sensors and elevation detectors, as well as a hazardous goods poster and carrier identification sensors. These devices should immediately provide information on whether a vehicle complies with the legal requirements. The sensors are connected to a computer database that identifies credentials and injury history and indicates whether the vehicle has an out-of-order federal order. Trucks that pass the initial inspection can continue on their way while trucks with potential security breaches are run over for further inspection.

Middleton

“The cradle-on-the-move component is typically used to sort overweight vehicles from legal vehicles,” Dan Middleton, research engineer at the Texas A&M Transportation Institute, told Transport Topics. “If their credentials are correct and the weight is within the prescribed limits, the truck is often allowed to keep moving and not enter a facility like this. Those [sensors] Make it easier to keep the truck moving. Time is money as they always say. “

The facility is also equipped with a thermal imaging device that examines the wheels and brakes of a truck for anomalies. Greg Seidenberger, District 1 Officer for Guadalupe County, stated that the thermal reader should detect cold brakes rather than hot brakes. Seidenberger, who worked with TxDOT and TxDPS on the inspection facility, said he learned from an inspector that brakes are cold when they are not working properly. Guadalupe County includes Seguin.

The facility also has an inspection pit for soldiers and law enforcement officers to inspect brakes and other aspects of the underside of trucks. A 90 foot platform scale allows inspectors to weigh an entire truck at once. Seidenberger said the platform scale is an improvement over the single-axis scale previously used. With the single-axle system, the truck driver had to move back and forth so that each axle could be weighed individually. An inspection officer then added the weight of each axle to make a total.

Greg Seidenberger, District 1 Officer for Guadalupe County

Seidenberger

“[The platform scale is] a state-of-the-art scale, ”Seidenberger told TT. “It weighs the whole truck at once. It prints everything, every axis and the total weight. It eliminates that person pushing a pencil. “

Seidenberger said the goal of the facility is to ensure security without hindering trade. He said preparation of the facility included meeting with engineering experts as well as trips to tour other facilities and speak to officials stationed there.

“The end result has been improving safety for drivers on highways in Texas,” said Seidenberger. “It’s not about prejudice against truckers. Attempts are made to enforce the applicable rules. “

New truck inspection station in Seguin, Texas

The inspection facility represents a $ 1 million technology investment, including cradle-on-the-move sensors and elevation detectors, as well as a hazardous goods poster and carrier identification sensors. (Texas Department of Public Safety)

Middleton said the I-10 was important from an east-west cargo perspective. The I-10 serves as a link between the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach and the port of Houston, which is approximately 170 miles east of Seguin. Each year, more than 247 million tons of cargo move through the Port of Houston facilities. The main export items in containers include plastics, chemicals, automotive materials and electronics.

José Weissmann, a professor at the University of Texas in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering in San Antonio, said he observed I-10 as a user during his many trips from San Antonio to Houston.

“It’s a very heavy truck corridor,” Weissmann told TT. “Because of all these travel generators that we have in some places along this route, it is a very busy route.”

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