Schneider National installs intermodal trailer tracking technology

Updated Jul 3, 2013

Schneider National announced that it is installing new tracking technology across its fleet of van trailers and intermodal containers. The new technology provides Schneider and its customers with continuous, real-time information regarding the location and load status of each trailer and container while adding new supply chain efficiencies.

The installation includes an upgrade to the trailer-tracking technology currently installed on the company’s Van Truckload and Dedicated fleets as well as the first-time installation within the Intermodal container fleet. With the new container-tracking installation, Schneider is the only intermodal provider in North America with 100 percent fleet coverage and cargo sensing capabilities.

Schneider is installing Qualcomm Enterprise Services’ Trailer Tracks 210 (TT210) technology on more than 44,000 intermodal containers and van trailers. Unlike trailers, intermodal containers are not tethered to a tractor for significant periods of time during the rail portion of a move, making it difficult to power a tracking device. Qualcomm’s new technology uses solar and cellular power, opening the door for intermodal container tracking and load sensing for the first time.

The capability will help Schneider better monitor its customers’ freight and enable shippers to check on the status of loads at any time via the Schneider website. “Having this crucial information at our fingertips allows us to respond to customers’ needs quicker and more efficiently than ever before,” said Jim Filter, senior vice president, Intermodal Commercial Management for Schneider National. “This investment, along with consistent rail improvements and our asset-based service, is creating an even more ‘truck-like’ experience for Schneider Intermodal’s customers.”

According to Filter, all of Schneider’s intermodal containers will be equipped with tracking devices by Sept. 30, 2013. The van trailer fleet upgrade will be complete by December 2015.

In addition to direct customer benefits, the comprehensive tracking technology enables Schneider to pinpoint the exact location of empty containers and trailers, making the planning and dispatch process more efficient, while reducing driver waste work and empty miles.

“We researched several technologies and chose to continue our use of Qualcomm’s tracking device platform, as we feel it is the most comprehensive solution for freight visibility,” said Dave Geyer, senior vice president and general manager, Van Truckload, Schneider National. “The new technology gives us the ability to better manage our trailing units, providing faster response time to customers and minimizing the amount of time, fuel, and wear and tear on equipment when having to locate a trailer.”