- Road transport
Road transport (
British English) or road transportation ( American English) is transporton roads of passengers or goods.
A hybrid of road transport and
ship transportis the historic horse-drawn boat.
The first forms of road transport were
horses, oxen or even humans carrying goods over dirt tracks that often followed game trails. As commerce increased, the tracks were often flattened or widened to accommodate the activities. Later, the travois, a frame used to drag loads, was developed. The wheelcame still later, probably preceded by the use of logs as rollers.
With the advent of the
Roman Empire, there was a need for armies to be able to travel quickly from one area to another, and the roads that existed were often muddy, which greatly delayed the movement of large masses of troops. To resolve this issue, the Romans built great roads. The Roman roads used deep roadbeds of crushed stone as an underlying layer to ensure that they kept dry, as the water would flow out from the crushed stone, instead of becoming mud in clay soils.
Industrial Revolution, and because of the increased commerce that came with it, improved roadways became imperative. The problem was rain combined with dirt roads created commerce-miring mud. John Loudon McAdam(1756-1836) designed the first modern highways. He developed an inexpensive paving material of soil and stone aggregate (known as macadam), and he embanked roads a few feet higher than the surrounding terrain to cause water to drain away from the surface. At the same time, Thomas Telford, made substantial advances in the engineering of new roads and the construction of bridges, particularly, the London to Holyhead road.
Various systems had been developed over centuries to reduce bogging and dust in cities, including
cobblestones and wooden paving. Tar-bound macadam ( tarmac) was applied to macadam roads towards the end of the 19th century in cities such as Paris. In the early 20th century tarmac and concrete paving were extended into the countryside.
Transport on roads can be roughly grouped into two categories: transportation of goods and transportation of people. In many countries licencing requirements and safety regulations ensure a separation of the two industries.
The nature of road transportation of goods depends, apart from the degree of development of the local infrastructure, on the distance the goods are transported by road, the weight and volume of the individual shipment and the type of goods transported. For short distances and light, small shipments a
vanor pickup truckmay be used. For large shipments even if less than a full truckload ( Less than truckload) a truck is more appropriate. (Also see Trucking and Hauling below). In some countries cargois transported by road in horse-drawn carriages, donkey carts or other non-motorized mode (see animal-powered transport). Delivery services (see Delivery (commerce)) are sometimes considered a separate category from cargo transport. In many places fast food is transported on roads by various types of vehicles. For inner city delivery of small packages and documents bike couriers are quite common.
Passengers) are transported on roads either in individual cars or automobiles or in mass transit/ public transportby bus/ Coach (vehicle). Special modes of individual transport by road like rikshas or velotaxis may also be locally available. (Also see links below).
Trucking and Hauling
Trucking companies (AE) or haulers/hauliers (BE) accept
cargofor road transportation.
road trains replace rail transport for goods on many routes. Low-loader or flat-bed trailers are used to haul containers, see containerization, in intermodal transport. Truck drivers operate either independently working directly for the client or through freight carriers or shipping agents. Some big companies (e.g. grocery store chains) operate their own internal trucking operations.
In the U.S. many truckers own their
truck(rig), and are known as owner-operators. Some road transportation is done on regular routes or for only one consigneeper run, while others transport goods from many different loading stations/shippers to various consignees. On some long runs only cargo for one lag of the route (to) is known when the cargo is loaded. Truckers may have to wait at the destination for the return cargo (from).
Bill of Ladingissued by the shipper provides the basic document for road freight. On cross- bordertransportation the trucker will present the cargo and documentation provided by the shipper to customsfor inspection (for EC see also Schengen Agreement). This also applies to shipments that are transported out of a Free port.
To avoid accidents caused by fatigue truckers have to keep to strict rules for drivetime and required rest perionds. Known in the U.S. as
hours of service, and in the E.U. as drivers working hours. See e.g. " Hours of Work and Rest Periods (Road Transport) Convention, 1979" or [http://www.ec.europa.eu/transport/road/policy/social_provision/social_driving_time_en.htm] . Tachographs record the times the vehicle is in motion and stopped. Some companies use two drivers per truck to ensure uninterrupted transportation; with one driver resting or sleeping in a bunk in the back of the cab while the other is driving. (see e.g. [http://www.tmta.com] or [http://www.www.tachochart.com] .
For transport of hazardous materials (see
dangerous goods) truckers need a licence, which usually requires them to pass an exam (e.g. in the EU). They have to make sure they affix proper labels for the respective hazard(s) to their vehicle. Liquid goods are transported by road in tank trucks (AE) or tanker lorries (BE) (also road-tankers) or special tankcontainers for intermodal transport. For unpackaged goods and liquids weigh stations confirm weight after loading and before delivery. For transportion of live animals special requirements have to be met in many countries to prevent cruelty to animals (see animal rights). For fresh and frozen goods refrigerator trucks or reefer (container)s are used.
Truck drivers often need special licenses to drive, known in the U.S. as a
commercial driver's license. In the U.K. a Large Goods Vehiclelicense is required.
Today roadways are principally
asphaltor concrete. Both are based on McAdam's concept of stone aggregate in a binder, asphalt cement or Portland cementrespectively. Asphalt is known as a flexible pavement, one which slowly will "flow" under the pounding of traffic. Concrete is a rigid pavement, which can take heavier loads but is more expensive and requires more carefully prepared subbase. So, generally, major roads are concrete and local roads are asphalt. Often concrete roads are covered with a thin layer of asphalt to create a wearing surface.
Modern pavements are designed for heavier vehicle loads and faster speeds, requiring thicker slabs and deeper subbase. Subbase is the layer or successive layers of stone, gravel and sand supporting the pavement. It is needed to spread out the slab load bearing on the underlying soil and to conduct away any water getting under the slabs. Water will undermine a pavement over time, so much of pavement and pavement joint design are meant to minimize the amount of water getting and staying under the slabs.
Shoulders are also an integral part of highway design. They are multipurpose; they can provide a margin of side clearance, a refuge for incapacitated vehicles, an emergency lane, and parking space. They also serve a design purpose, and that is to prevent water from percolating into the soil near the main pavement's edge. Shoulder pavement is designed to a lower standard than the pavement in the traveled way and won't hold up as well to traffic. (Which is why driving on the shoulder is generally prohibited.)
Pavement technology is still evolving, albeit in not easily noticed increments. For instance, chemical additives in the pavement mix make the pavement more weather resistant, grooving and other surface treatments improve resistance to skidding and hydroplaning, and joint seals which were once tar are now made of low maintenance neoprene.
Nearly all roadways are built with devices meant to control
traffic. Most notable to the motorist are those meant to communicate directly with the driver. Broadly, these fall into three categories: signs, signals or pavement markings. They help the driver navigate; they assign the right-of-way at intersections; they indicate laws such as speed limitsand parking regulations; they advise of potential hazards; they indicate passing and no passing zones; and otherwise deliver information and to assure traffic is orderly and safe.
200 years ago these devices were signs, nearly all informal. In the late 19th century signals began to appear in the biggest cities at a few highly congested intersections. They were manually operated, and consisted of semaphores, flags or paddles, or in some cases colored electric lights, all modeled on railroad signals. In the 20th century signals were automated, at first with electromechanical devices and later with computers. Signals can be quite sophisticated: with vehicle sensors embedded in the pavement, the signal can control and choreograph the turning movements of heavy traffic in the most complex of intersections. In the 1920s traffic engineers learned how to coordinate signals along a thoroughfare to increase its speeds and volumes. In the 1980s, with computers, similar coordination of whole networks became possible.
In the 1920s pavement markings were introduced. Initially they were used to indicate the road’s centerline. Soon after they were coded with information to aid motorists in passing safely. Later, with multi lane roads they were used to define lanes. Other uses, such as indicating permitted turning movements and pedestrian crossings soon followed.
In the 20th century traffic control devices were standardized. Before then every locality decided on what its devices would look like and where they would be applied. This could be confusing, especially to traffic from outside the locality. In the United States standardization was first taken at the state level, and late in the century at the federal level. Each country has a Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) and there are efforts to blend them into a worldwide standard.
Besides signals signs and markings, other forms of traffic control are designed and built into the roadway. For instance, curbs and rumble strips can be used to keep traffic in a given lane and median barriers can prevent left turns and even U-turns.
As the horse-drawn
carriagewas replaced by the car and lorry or truck, and speeds increased, the need for smoother roads and less vertical displacement became more apparent, and pneumatic tires were developed to decrease the apparent roughness. Wagonand carriage wheels, made of wood, had a tire in the form of an ironstrip that kept the wheel from wearing out quickly. Pneumatic tires, which had a larger footprint than iron tires, also were less likely to get bogged down in the mudon unpaved roads.
Toll roads in the United States
toll roads were usually built by private companies under a government franchise. They typically paralleled or replaced routes already with some volume of commerce, hoping the improved road would divert enough traffic to make the enterprise profitable. Plank roads were particularly attractive as they greatly reduced rolling resistance and mitigated the problem of getting mired in mud. Another improvement, better grading to lessen the steepness of the worst stretches, allowed draft animals to haul heavier loads.
A "toll road" in the United States is often called a "turnpike". The term "
turnpike" probably originated from the gate, often a simple pike, which blocked passage until the fare was paid at a "toll house" (or "toll booth" in current terminology). When the toll was paid the pike, which was mounted on a swivel, was turned to allow the vehicle to pass. Tolls were usually based on the type of cargo being transported, not the type of vehicle. The practice of selecting routes so as to avoid tolls is called shunpiking. This may be simply to avoid the expense, as a form of economic protest (or boycott), or simply to seek a road less traveled as a bucolic interlude.
History, funding through tolls
Companies were formed to build, improve, and maintain a particular section of roadway, and tolls were collected from users to finance the enterprise. The enterprise was usually named to indicate the locale of its roadway, often including the name of one of both of the termini. The word "turnpike" came into common use in the names of these roadways and companies, and is essentially used interchangeably with "toll road" in current terminology.
United States, toll roads began with the Lancaster Turnpikein the 1790s, within Pennsylvania, connecting Philadelphia and Lancaster.
New York State, the Great Western Turnpikewas started in Albany in 1799 and eventually extended, by several alternate routes, to near what is now Syracuse, New York.
Toll roads peaked in the mid 19th century, and by the turn of the
twentieth centurymost toll roads were taken over by state highway departments. The demise of this early toll road era was due to the rise of canals and railroads, which were more efficient (and thus cheaper) in moving freight over long distances. Roads wouldn't again be competitive with rails and barges until the first half of the 20th century when the internal combustion engine replaces draft animals as the source of motive power.
With the development, mass production, and popular embrace of the automobile, faster and higher capacity roads were needed. In the 1920s limited access highways appeared. Their main characteristics were dual roadways with access points limited to (but not always) grade-separated interchanges. Their dual roadways allowed high volumes of
traffic, the need for no or few traffic lights along with relatively gentle grades and curves allowed higher speeds.
The first limited access highways were "Parkways", so called because of their often park-like
landscapingand, in the metropolitan New York Cityarea, they connected the region's system of parks. When the German Autobahns built in the 1930s introduced higher design standards and speeds, road planners and road-builders in the United States started developing and building toll roads to similar high standards. The Pennsylvania Turnpike, which largely followed the path of a partially-built railroad, was the first, opening in 1940.
After 1940 with the
Pennsylvania Turnpike, toll roads saw a resurgence, this time to fund limited access highways. In the late 1940s and early 1950s, after World War IIinterrupted the evolution of the highway, the US resumed building toll roads. They were to still higher standards and one road, the New York State Thruway, had standards that became the prototype for the U.S. Interstate Highway System. Several other major toll-roads which connected with the Pennsylvania Turnpike were established before the creation of the Interstate Highway System. These were the Indiana Toll Road, Ohio Turnpike, and New Jersey Turnpike.
US Interstate Highway system
In the United States, beginning in 1956, Dwight D. Eisenhower National System of Interstate and Defense Highways, commonly called the
Interstate Highway Systemwas built. It uses 12 foot (3.65m) lanes, wide medians, a maximum of 4% grade, and full access control, though many sections don't meet these standards due to older construction or constraints. This system created a continental-sized network meant to connect every population center of 50,000 people or more.
By 1956, most limited access highways in the eastern United States were toll roads. In that year, the federal
Interstate highwayprogram was established, funding non-toll roads with 90% federal dollars and 10% state match, giving little incentive for states to expand their turnpike system. Funding rules initially restricted collections of tolls on newly funded roadways, bridges, and tunnels. In some situations, expansion or rebuilding of a toll facility using Interstate Highway Program funding resulted in the removal of existing tolls. This occurred in Virginiaon Interstate 64at the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnelwhen a second parallel roadway to the regional 1958 bridge-tunnelwas completed in 1976.
Since the completion of the initial portion of the interstate highway system, regulations were changed, and portions of toll facilities have been added to the system. Some states are again looking at toll financing for new roads and maintenance, to supplement limited federal funding. In some areas, new road projects have been completed with
public-private partnershipsfunded by tolls, such as the Pocahontas Parkway(I-895) near Richmond, Virginia.
Road transport and the environment
By subsector, road transport is the largest contributor to
global warming[http://www.pnas.org/cgi/reprint/0702958104v1.pdf] (74%) [ [http://www.iata.org/whatwedo/environment/climate_change.htm Climate change ] ] .
* [http://ec.europa.eu/transport/road/policy/index_en.htm Road Transport in the European Union]
*IRTE ( [http://www.soe.org.uk Institute of Road Transport Engineers] )
* [http://transportation.trarevo.com/Category/logistic/car_transportation/ Car Transportation Companies]
* [http://www.dna-evolutions.com/dnaappletsample.html Demo applet of a evolutionary algorithm for automated transportation planning]
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
Road Transport — In 1996 1997, according to government statistics, Burma had a total of 30,153 kilometers (18,695 miles) of roads, of which 16,439 kilometers (10,192 miles) were unpaved. Most major roads run south to north, along the valleys of the Irrawaddy… … Historical Dictionary of Burma (Myanmar)
Road Transport — Subject to several directives on rules of employment, training and work periods for drivers of heavy commercial vehicles, on road safety, and on cross border freight … Glossary of the European Union and European Communities
Road transport in Australia — Road transport is an essential element of transport in Australia due to the large land area of the country and low population density in considerable parts of the country. Related to this, rail transport has not been sufficiently developed for a… … Wikipedia
Road transport in Singapore — HistoryThe earliest roads in modern Singapore after its founding in 1819 were laid out in an orderly manner as detailed in the Jackson Plan of 1822, in keeping with Sir Stamford Raffles s directions. A grid system was adopted for the town area,… … Wikipedia
Road transport in Victoria — The roads of Victoria are the highest density in any state in Australia. Unlike Australia s other mainland states where vast areas are very sparsely inhabited outback , Victoria has population centres spread out over most of the state, with only… … Wikipedia
Road transport in Peterborough — The City of Peterborough in the East of England has an extensive and well integrated road network, owing partly to its status as a new town. Since the 1960s the city has seen considerable expansion and its various suburbs are linked by a system… … Wikipedia
Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation — महाराष्ट्र राज्य मार्ग परिवहन महामंडळ Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation Official logo of MSRTC Info Owner Government of Maharashtra Locale … Wikipedia
History of road transport — The history of road transport started with the development of tracks by humans and their beasts of burden. Early roads The first forms of road transport were horses, oxen or even humans carrying goods over tracks that often followed game trails,… … Wikipedia
Himachal Road Transport Corporation — The Himachal Road Transport Corporation (HRTC) is the state owned road transport operator in the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh.OriginHimachal was formed as a C class State by merger of 33 hilly States of North Western Himalayas on 15th April,… … Wikipedia
Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation — Infobox Company name = APSRTC company type = Public Sector Corporation under the Transport Ministry of the State Government of Andhra Pradesh foundation = April 16, 1853, nationalized in 1951 location city = Hyderabad location country = India… … Wikipedia