Smartphone App Targets NY-NJ Drayage Delays

Apr 10, 2014

Article By: Joseph Bonney, Senior Editor at JOC.com

Lynx MCAA smartphone application that allows truckers to confirm container availability, vessel schedules and other information is being introduced at two container terminals in the Port of New York and New Jersey.

Versiant’s Lynx Mobile app was rolled out at Maher Terminals and is on track for implementation at Global Terminals, said Edward Reade, the company’s vice president of information.

The mobile app already is used at Houston’s Bayport and Barbours Cut terminals, at Port Newark Container Terminal, and at the Seagirt container terminal in Baltimore.

Lynx Mobile is designed to close a trucker-terminal information gap that contributes to delays for drayage drivers, Reade said. Tioga Group estimates that 5 percent of drivers arriving at U.S. container terminals are shunted to “trouble windows” to straighten out documentation errors or other problems.
 
“It provides a real-time user interface for anybody who’s seeking information from a terminal operator. Being able to check the current status electronically means that when truckers visit the terminal, they have a reduced chance of long turn times or getting trouble tickets,” Reade said.

Versiant’s mobile app provides each terminal with its own URL and is integrated with Navis or other terminal operating systems. Users can access data such as container availability, terminal announcements, equipment history, gate inquiries, booking searches and vessel schedules.

Reade said Versiant provides terminals with weekly or monthly reports on how the app is being used, so that terminal operators can use the information to analyze how it is affecting turn times and how operations might be improved.

He said the most apparent benefit is a reduction in phone calls to terminals, which he said take an average of three to five minutes each to check things such as container availability.

“This provides an easier avenue for customers to get information out of the system, and a reduction in the amount of time the terminal must spend answering those inquiries,” Reade said.