In a letter to U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, Sen. Charles Schumer of New York requested the Transportation Department investigate GPS systems used by trucking companies and consider developing a federal standard for truck-routing systems.
Schumer noted New York truck drivers often rely on GPS to plan their routes and this planning has led to multiple incidents with low bridges because some systems cannot account for the size of the vehicles and match that to the infrastructure.
In his letter, Schumer said more than 80 percent of low-bridge strikes in New York are tied to GPS routing. "Reports from local police organizations continue to fault the reliance on basic GPS technology as the main culprit in many of these low-bridge commercial truck accidents," he said.
DOT already suggests drivers and companies use GPS systems that can include this level of detail, but Schumer seeks a policy mandate to get all companies on board.
Schumer did not spell out how the federal system should look. - Geoff Whiting