New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) officials have announced the launch of new weigh station technology, NJPass, which allows pre-enrolled commercial truck fleets to bypass weigh stations in the state.
NJDOT partnered with Canadian company International Road Dynamics (IRD) to develop a system that permits NJPass equipped vehicles to bypass the three inbound weigh stations in the state, located at I-78, I-80, and I-295. Traffic statistics show that over 150,000 trucks encounter these three weigh stations on an annual basis, creating a need for a traffic management tool, such as NJPass.
The new bypass will help save money on fuel and reduce drive times, a significant contributor to shipping costs, while reducing back-ups at weigh stations, and improving highway safety. The State Police Transportation Safety Bureau runs the New Jersey weigh stations. Any trucking company can apply to enroll in the program. The New Jersey State Police will then be able to be more discriminatory in terms of which commercial carriers, vehicles, and drivers, are pulled into the weigh stations, based on their credentials and history. Enrolling companies will pay an annual fee calculated by fleet numbers and the length of time the company elects to participate in the program.
NJPass has been developed by Saskatchewan-based International Road Dynamics (IRD), a leading traffic management technology company, which provides a wide variety of intelligent transportation systems (ITS), including traditional weigh station technology, virtual weigh stations, and remotely controlled weigh stations. The system works like other transponder bypass programs, giving hauliers the opportunity to bypass fixed weigh stations across the state using a dedicated short-range communications (DSRC) transponder, saving time, money, and fuel for drivers.
The NJPass program is provided by the State of New Jersey, and administered by IRD. Qualifications are based on FMCSA ratings and past history at roadside inspections. A carrier will typically qualify unless they have a Conditional or Unsatisfactory rating. Weight station bypass rates are determined using information from SAFER, and typically range from 50-90%. The current pre-clearance bypass stations are located on: I-78 EB at Greenwich, I-295 NB at Carney’s Point, and I-80 EB at Knowlton.
“The technology allows compliant vehicles to keep moving past weighing facilities, saving money on fuel and time on routes,” explained Eric Hooks, sales manager for NJPass. “NJPass will assist New Jersey State Police and NJDOT to strike a balance between identifying violations, improving highway safety, and facilitating efficient travel for the commercial vehicles using their roadways. It will aid in the reduction of traffic congestion and greenhouse gas emissions around the stations.”
Paul Truban, NJDOT’s manager of the Bureau of Freight Planning and Services, noted, “This system will help to improve the operation of New Jersey’s weigh stations by focusing on higher risk carriers, and provide more efficient use of our limited New Jersey State Police resources.”