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Sophisticated freight ITS for UK plant

A UK technology supplier has deployed a sophisticated ITS-style traffic management system to improve productivity at a large manufacturing site in Maidenhead. GlaxoSmithKline had a number of issues that were causing problems across its facility: large numbers of heavy transport vehicles (HTVs) from all over Europe enter the site to make daily deliveries; the constant flow of traffic was causing delays in manufacturing operations and had the potential to lead to safety issues; the customer wanted a better system of controlling the flow of traffic and manage the areas HTVs could enter/exit; it was important to dictate which bay the HTV’s were to park in; and it wanted to make sure the site’s speed limit was enforced.

Auto Mate Systems Limited provided a solution to the problems by installing a series of five traffic lights throughout the site, linked via a long-range radio network system, allowing control to be given to the security team in reception, using both the touch screen control unit, as well as via a PC. The control unit also allows the opening of both the entrance and exit barrier gates across the site, as well as displaying which parking bay HTV drivers should head to via the two large variable message signs (VMS) placed around the site. The VMS display both the vehicles registration number and which bay they should head to. Partial control of the system was also given to the goods inward department via a push button system, which would automatically hold the previous traffic lights on red whilst a vehicle was unloaded. This allowed forklift trucks to safely unload a vehicle before another HTV was allowed to pass.

The barrier was also interlinked to the fire alarm network across site, allowing the complete system to adopt optimal evacuation conditions. In order to enforce the speed limit, Auto Mate installed four vehicle-actuated radar speed signs across the site to show what speed the vehicles were travelling at, alerting speeding drivers by flashing red and warning the drivers to slow down. Mike Caffrey, project manager at Auto Mate, said, “The whole system took us three weeks to install, including both setting up the long range radio network and testing changing times on the traffic lights. I’m really pleased that our system and has both improved safety and efficiency on site.”

June 5, 2014

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