"Trading Golf Carts for Walkie-Talkies"

NYK Logistics implements wireless location technology, yard management software to optimize operations

NYK Logistics implements wireless location technology, yard management software to optimize operations

Santa Clara, CA  September 9, 2003  Wireless solutions provider WhereNet Corp. announced today that NYK Logistics Inc., a third-party logistics (3PL) provider, has deployed the WhereNet real-time locating system and WhereNet yard management solution to manage more than 50,000 inbound ocean freight containers and 30,000 outbound trailers at its Long Beach, Calif. facility.

Using the WhereNet wireless system that provides location information for the containers, trailers and hostler tractors within its 70-acre yard, NYK Logistics said it automated many of its yard operations, which has increased dock door utilization, reduced yard congestion and increased yard throughput.

WhereNet said that in addition to using its yard management system, NYK Logistics is also implementing WhereNet's wireless infrastructure, which combines both location and mobile communication capabilities in a single integrated system. With 35 WhereNet wireless locating access points mounted around the yard, NYK Logistics said it has complete coverage of its entire facility, which includes more than 1,100 parking slots and 250 dock doors.

Upon arrival at the gate, every container or trailer gets "tagged" with a small, active radio transmitter called a WhereTag. From this point forward, NYK Logistics personnel have constant connectivity to their yard assets wherever they move about the facility. What's more, NYK Logistics uses this same wireless local area network (LAN) for mobile communications, allowing yard workers to use handheld devices to transmit data via the WhereNet infrastructure.

"We have traded in our golf carts and walkie-talkies for a completely wireless system that automates time-sensitive yard moves and provides ocean-to-road turn times," said Rick Pople, general manager, NYK Logistics. "We are engaged in finding the best people, processes and technologies to maintain our leadership position and to further the growth of our business. WhereNet has already helped us achieve giant efficiency gains that will result in a quick return on investment."

Robert Goodwin, vice president for Gartner, commented, "In order to achieve significant productivity gains in high-velocity, high-volume distribution centers, intermodal facilities and marine terminals, shippers and 3PL's must embrace emerging technologies that automate manual-intensive processes and provide accurate real-time data capture."

He added that wireless location technologies are already enabling productivity gains in industrial manufacturing and transportation and logistics environments. "As more companies deploy such solutions, the value of these location-based applications will multiply across the supply chain as this real-time data and status information is shared across multiple business partners," he said.