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Central Control Improves M.O.W.T. Haulage Efficiency

9th June 1944, Page 23
9th June 1944
Page 23
Page 23, 9th June 1944 — Central Control Improves M.O.W.T. Haulage Efficiency
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Which of the following most accurately describes the problem?

Whole CountryDioided Into Three Sections With Close Liaison Which Permits Considerable Balancing of Traffic andVehicleCapacity

ONE of the most important branches of the M.O.W.T. Road Haulage Organization is the Central Control, in London. This is not an operating section, its main function being to

ensure the rapid clearance of long-distance traffic, i.e., for mileages of .60 or more, to achieve which purpose its routine includes a daily reporting system . covering the whole country.

At the same time, every endeavour is made to switch any surplus of vehicles to cope with a corresponding amount of surplus traffic within a reasonable distance, although there are times and conditions when the importance of clearing ports or particularly urgent loads must override the principle of constant loading of the vehicles.

Last year 6 per cent, of controlled traffic was attended to by the diversion of vehicles through Central Control, Areas upwards to divisions must not borrow loading capacity from other area or divisions except through Central Control, although there can be action of this nature between area and area in the same division, the matter, in this case, being arranged by the divisional officer.

Other objects are to move more traffic, in addition to saving rubber and fuel, and to. do this with the least possible disturbance to normal loadings. For emergency calls, period loans of vehicles are arranged if the duration is likely to be long, or trip loans for short periods. When vehicles have thus been directed away for some time and based on some other unit, they are, as often as possible, directed to their home bases or past these, so that drivers need not be divorced for a long time from their homes, and vehicle maintenance can he done, So successful has this method proved that very few complaints from drivers cencerning this .matter are now being received, To facilitate the arrangements, RH Form A/2, which is handed in by each driver to his reporting point, is endorsed right across with the words: . " On Period Loan to — Unit," this constituting a Constant reminder to the unit controller as to the vehicle's home base.

Deals With Surplus Traffic and Vehicles Central Control does not concern itself with the total amount of traffic carried. It is kept informed only of surplus traffic and surplus vehicles, and it does not have to worry unduly unless the' former is more than the equivalent of one day's vehicle capacity.

It is considered that road transport is now far more capable of moving bulk consignments than it was before the war.. Incidentally, much of th'e present traffic is that which is really unsuitable for carriage by rail, where it might have to be handled three or more times.

.Four main points are taken into consideration in sending by road--(1) because the railways cannot handle the traffic; (2) it is not suitable for carriage by rail; (3) that much of the journey would have to be performed by road in any case; (4) speed of delivery.

For any particular consignment, say. by the M.O.S., the latter will approach the railways; if they refuse it, then the M.O.S. contacts the unit or area or division. It must be remembered, however, that the Regional Transport Commissioner is finally responsible for cleciding what should be consigned to rail, road, canal, etc.

In the event of any query over new traffic, say 100 tons, the unit controller might take, perhaps, 10 tons to keep things moving, and query the remainder through the R.T.C.

Control by Small Staff and Few Forms Central control deals with commendably few forms, and its establishment is only three officers and three clerks. For its purpose the country is divided into three sections, the operation of each being the responsibility, of one of the officers mentioned, liaison between the sections being the responsibility of the officer in charge of Section A,

Each officer is able to make any required movement of his own vehicles within his section without reference to higher authority., but if such actiOn he not possible, the matter is referred to Section A for instruction. Where vehicles can be moved between adjacent sections action can be taken by the officer of Section A without reference to higher authority', When it is necessary to move vehicles from one section to another not adjacent, the Matter is referred to the officer responsible for Central Control. In most cases, of course, there is consultation before any move be made, but action is sometimes expedited by the above procedure.

The actual sections are as follow A—divisions 4, 5, .6, 12, these comprising Eastern, London, Southern, and South-Eastern; B—divisions 1, 2, 10, 11, made up of Northern, North' Eastern, North-Western, and Scotland; C—divisions 3, 7, 8, 9, comprising North Midland, South-Western, Wales, and Midland.

One of the reasons for this splitting up of sections was to ensure that heavy port areas are spread over them. For example, London to Section A, southWest to Sectiot C, and North-West Coast to Section B.

For the daily reporting to which we have referred, the following procedure is adopted :—(1) Unit controllers submit reports to the Area Road Haulage Officer covering traffic and vehicle position at 4 p.m. each day. This includes the estimated situation for the following 24 hours. (2) The A.R.H.O., on receiving the reports by telephone at 4.30 p.m., balances, so far as possible, the position between the units in his area and reports to the Divisional Road Haulage Officer. (3) The D.R.H.O., en receipt of the reports at 5.16 p.m., in turn, balances, so far as possible, the position between areas in his division, and reports to Central Control between 9 and 10 a.m. the following day. The divisions report their positions by areas, so that detailed area information is available at Central Control. (4) Central Control, on receipt of divisional reports, compiles a national report and balances between the divisions as required. It is not always found possible to take effective action the same day, but additional vehicles can nearly always be in position early the following morning.

From the' information thus received by Central_ Control, important statistics are compiled, these including surplus traffic streams, surplus vehicle record, record of vehicles unavailable, record of movements of vehicles returning empty to home base or en route for home base.

Interchange of Vehicles For Special Traffics In addition to its ordinary demands, calls may be made upon Central Control. th supply vehicles for special traffics, such as cased aircraft, barges, and cased vehicles. When these dernands become very heavy, the use of the particular types of vehicle by the unit controller is restricted and the vehicles are reported to the A.12.1-1.0. for such emergency use.

As practically all the work is done by telephone, the forms and the information required are simplified, so that only in about one case in 1,000 do the calls have a duration of more than six minutes for the completion of a form.

Another form is used to collate the information from the divisional reports, and a weekly analysis is made of the surplus traffic streams in and out of the divisions. A copy of this analysis is sent monthly to each divisional officer, in order to give him what is termed a national aspect.


Locations: South-Western, London

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