Satellite Technology Used in Cross-Border Trucking Project

Starting later this month, trucks crossing the U.S.-Mexico border as part of a new demonstration program will have equipment on board that allows them to be monitored as they pick up and deliver their loads.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration announced its plans yesterday, noting the decision to require the installation of satellite tracking technology on trucks in the program was made after members of Congress expressed a desire to know whether participants are complying with federal safety and trade laws.

The agency will initially spend approximately $367,000 to outfit all trucks from the United States and Mexico that take part in the program and use the information gathered from the equipment to ensure trucks comply with hours-of-service laws and rules that govern the trips into and out of the country. The GPS-based technology also will allow real-time tracking of truck location, documenting every international-border and state-line crossing.

According to FMCSA, the technology will help continue to ensure that trucks operating as part of the program are complying with the agency's rigorous safety standards and U.S. trade laws.

The satellite-based technology, developed by San Diego-based Qualcomm Inc., will be used to track trucks by vehicle number and company only, no driver information will be collected.

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