Over decades, rail transport has been playing a key role in building nations by carrying thousands of goods and people across a particular nation on trips of business, discovery and pleasure, as well as opening up the vast open spaces, thereby creating development and market opportunities. To this end, the following are the most notable rail distances in the world:
1. A rail trip between Moscow in Russia and Pyongyang in North Korea is the longest distance rail trip in the world with a space of 10,267 km. The usual time always planned for the trip is 206 hours. This means it takes a train not less than 8 days to complete the journey.
2. A rail trip from Moscow in Russia to Vladivostok in Russia is the 2nd longest rail trip in the world with a space of 9, 289 km, the normal hours for the trip is 144 hours. In order words, it takes a train 6 days to complete the journey.
3. Moscow in Russia to Beijing in China through Harbin railroad is the 3rd longest rail trip in the world with a space of 8,984 rail km; the journey will take 6 days or 145 hours.
4. Moscow in Russian to Beijing in China through Ulaanbaatar railroad is a distance of 7,826 km and it will take 127 hours or 5 days and few hours to complete the journey.
5. The rail distance between Moscow and Tommot in Russia is 7,318 km and a train is expected to use 140 hours or 5 days and few hours to complete the journey.
6. From Kashgar to Yingtan in China is a rail distance of 5,166 km, and itwill take 72 hours 39 minutes or 3 days and few hours for a train to complete the journey.
7. A trip between Guangzhou to Lhasa in China is about 4,980 km; such a trip will take 53 hours or 2 days and some hours for a train to complete the journey.
8. Shanghai to Yining in China is 4,742 km and its normal travel time for a train to complete the journey on the route is 55 hours 43 minutes or 2days and few hours.
9. Guangzhou to Urumqi in China is a 2 days journey of 4,684 km distance; a train is expected to spend 49 hours, 34 minutes.
10. From Toronto to Vancouver in Canada is 4,466 km railroad; such a trip will take a train 86 hours or better still 3 days and few hours.
Generally speaking, passengers’ attitudes have an influence in determining whether to choose rail transport for their long distance trips or not. The huge benefits of travelling a long distance by rail have heavily influenced the public perceptions in choosing the rail for their long distance trips. However, there arelist of benefits that both the passengers and the service providers will enjoy in long distance trips by rail. Here are the benefits:
1. Long distance rail trips are cost efficient. For instance, what will cost a train to move several tons of goods on a single journey may cost nothing less than 10 trailers to move the same goods at a higher cost.
2. The origin and destination of travelling a long distance by air ends in the airport, but travelling a long distance by rail can take you to a desired city, town or village that is located along the rail road corridors.
3. Many air passengers who fail to use busy airline may end up waiting more than necessary for their flight and they may also have to pay higher fares. Passengers in long distance rail trips pay cheaper fares for their trips andthey embark on their trips without much delay.
4. Travelling a long distance by road may increase your trip time more than necessary, why? This is because your driver may want to take breaks for rest and meal and also, you may come across several check points; all of these significantly increase your trip time. These are not so in rail transportation. No several check points and the train does not need to stop for anyone to take meals.
5. At times, a driver on a long distance trip may deliberately decide not to take break for rest or meal in order to save time and money. This may result to an unnecessary stress, fatigue and other factors that may impair the ability to drive safely on the road, wherefore, putting his own life and the lives of other innocent people at risk. However, passengers on long distance rail trips travel without stress or danger to others; they move freely and safely. The passengers can eat and even sleep without any cause for alarm while the journey progresses.
6. The train can quickly make many intermediate stops without using much
fuel. This is not possible in air transport.
7. Railway stations are less expensive to build and also easy to operate when you compare it to airports.
8. A long distance rail links many markets together, thereby generating more economic revenues.
9. A long distance rail trip helps generate more revenues to the rail company and also enables the company to spend less when you compare it to short distance operations.
10. Train use fuel more efficiently than air and road transport, for instance, a train can use a gallon of fuel to move one ton worth of goods more than 400 miles, this is not possible with road transport, while air craft on its own burns almost half of its fuel in landings and take offs.
The people’s attitudes and perceptions towards long distance trips by rail are important in determining potential passengers. Also, they are capable of creating
either positive or negative impact on rail transport. These days, mostly in Europe,railway transport companies provide both national and international long
distance transport services to their potential passengers. Therefore, traveling a
long distance by rail becomes unique and the attitudinal behavior of people toward long distance journeys by rail becomes a major factor in determining the sustainability of long distance journeys by rail and the prosperity of rail transport
companies engaging in long distance trips.
Without any element of doubt, long distance trips by rail and the rate at which
people use the train for their long distance trips are increasingly growing these days as more affordable mode to either of road or air transport. The value and the importance of long distance trips by rail transport cannot be overlooked; it connects different towns, villages and cities and many markets along the route together to produce greater revenue.
Despite the importance of long trip rail transport, it is important to know that the belief and the perception of the people can affect the demand for long distance
rail trips both positively and negatively. There are factors that can determine the
attitude of passengers toward long distance rail transport. Such factors are:
Safety: This is one of the major factors that can affect the attitude of passengers. Potential passengers must be sure that they are safe from harm or danger when engaging in a long distance trip by train. They must have confidence that the service providers are conscious of their safety throughout the journey. You can
imagine what the attitude of passengers would be if the train they are traveling
on a distance trip is stuck down for two days in the middle of the journey, probably, in a thick forest where they are not close to any town or village. Such an experience will surely discourage passengers to travel by rail, especially during along distance trip.
Accessibility: It’s important to note that long distance rail trips provide access to many cities, towns, villages and market places. This will likely encourage people to
choose the train for their trips and more importantly, rail transport itself must be
easily accessible by potential passengers; people must find it possible to choose the train for their trips. If the rail transport is not easily accessible then it will not be attractive or possible for passengers to choose the train for their longer trips.
Affordability: The use of transport cannot be neglected either by individuals or
organizations. More importantly, nations can’t afford to neglect transport in its
economy. These explain why transport is important and why it must be easily affordable to everyone. Rail transport must be cost effective; people must be able to choose the train for their long distance trips without having serious problem to pay for it. If many people are unable to afford train transport for their needs due to high rate of transport fare, this may discourage many potential passengers.
However, it’s interesting to note that, till date, railway transport still provides
more avoidable service to the public when you compare it to other modes of
Convenience: Rail transport companies must ensure that people choosing the train for their long distance trips must be free from any form of stress. Transport companies must add features to the train that will make long distance trips luxurious. A train traveling on a long distance, probably for two days, is expected to have vital features that will reduce the burden of the passengers in such a long distance trip. It is also interesting to note that most trains used for distance
journeys have many features to make such long trips stress free.
Comfort: For instance, a train on an international trip moving from Moscow in Russia to Pyongyang in North Korea will have to spend at least 206 hours to cover 10,267 kilometers. This means between Moscow and Pyongyang a train is
expected to spend not less than 8 days, wherefore, passengers in such a long
distance trip may feel worry, be upset and frighten during the journey. As a result
of this, the number of passengers on long distance trips may be reduced.
Therefore, every rail transport company must do everything possible to make
every long distance trip an enjoyable experience for all passengers on board. Rail
transport providers must ensure that passengers are content with regard to their
well-being throughout the journey. All passengers must enjoy all the comfort they
deserve; even their seats must be designed for comfort. A dissatisfied passenger may be dangerous. However, the railway transport companies should ensure that
their passengers are comfortable throughout all journeys.
Security: The fear of rap, terrorist attack, armed robbery and other forms of crime
may discourage people mostly female passengers from choosing the rail transport for their long distance trips. Therefore, measures must be taken by service providers to guard against any form of attack or crime during trips. Adequate
security must not be neglected to ensure that people are free from fear and
anxiety during their journeys.
Nevertheless, choosing rail transport for long distance journey is good; therefore
the rail transport service providers must continue to guide the belief and
perception of their passengers by providing them quality services that are free
from any form of danger or harm.
Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:I 80_Eastshore_Fwy.jpg
A highway is the main public road that connects different cities, towns and at times, villages etc. together. It is a major and significant public road that is able and fit to carry fairly heavy traffic. Since automobile has gained popularity in the world today, the need for adequate and efficient transport system for promoting economic development is a notable fact that cannot be doubted. Substantial investments on road infrastructure developments by government at the different levels e.g. federal, state and local government are also frantic efforts to attracting investors that will promote the economy.
Highways have great benefits to industries, educational institutions, tourist centers, hospitals, to mention but few. It plays an indispensable role in the economy of both the developed and the developing countries of the world in making travels easier and faster. Hence, any problem that may affect smooth transport operations on highways may have greater negative impacts on the economy of a nation, at large. This and many other reasons explain why highways are important to a nation. However, below are the benefits of highways:
1. Good transport infrastructure, like highway network enhances transport system that reduces transportation costs and this, in turn, definitely reduces the production costs while it increases productivity and profitability of organizations.
2. Highway network also makes transportation schedules and deliveries more reliable and timely.
3. Highways also contribute immensely to social growth, relatives are able to visit their loved ones more often and it enhances good relationship between family and friends.
4. Highways can relatively reduce travel time to villages, cities and towns thereby encourage people to travel for business and trade.
5. Highways make journeys faster, comfortable and safer than usual while at the same time reduce fuel consumption.
Nevertheless, the designs, construction and regulations of the highways and the
vehicles used on them and the training of drivers and other road users may go a
long way in making our highways safer for all of us.
Agriculture still remains the most important industry in the world today; no individual can do without food. Food insecurity in any nation is the beginning of hunger and other related problems such as poor health, kidney disease, eye disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease etc. To be healthy requires good nutritious meals at all times but most people living in a country where there’s food insecurity have to choose inexpensive foods with low nutritional values and with time, these may seriously affect their health.
Furthermore, citizens in food insecure nations are likely to suffer for psychological and behavioral health issues while their kids may also have problems in their studies. In a simple term, good food is indispensable; it is a mechanism for building a foundation for good health.
Apart from health issues, agriculture generates revenue and also provides jobs, raw materials e.g. cocoa, rubber etc. and more importantly, food for all. Having considered the enormous importance of agriculture to a nation, it is equally important to look at one major factor, among others, that has the potentials to contribute directly to agricultural growth of any nation. This singular factor is road transportation.
The importance of road transportation in linking the rural areas of a nation together for agricultural growth cannot be under-emphasized. The connectivity facilitated by road transportation is the most and probably a single important factor that determines the well being and quality life of both the people living in the rural and the urban areas of a nation and more importantly, a potential factor for agricultural growth.
Access to various rural communities by road transportation provides relative advantages for agricultural growth. A road investment contributes directly to agricultural growth in various ways you need to know. However, here are the ways:
1. Road transportation is quick, convenient and flexible for both short and long distances for transporting agric produce from villages and other rural communities to where they are needed.
2. Investment on road transportation and infrastructures enable collection from community-to- community or village-to- village delivery.
3. Road transportation plays an important role to complement rail transportation in evacuating large quantity of agric produce from rural communities. Road transport is the only mode that connects various villages and also serves as a link to rail stations. In short, it’s a perfect complementary to rail transport system.
4. Road transportation has a unique benefit to farmers that produce perishable products such as vegetables, tomatoes etc., by helping them move such products quickly to the town or market place where they can be sold.
5. Road transportation system plays a highly significant role in controlling and protecting farms from an epidemic disease that can cause a high rate of mortality or from a destructively numerous pests that can destroy plantation e.g. a plague of locusts. This is possible through the prompt movement of essential insecticides or drugs by road to control such diseases or plagues.
6. In addition, road transport system also plays a very important role in the transportation of agric produce for short and medium distances.
7. Since agricultural produce may be raw materials for cottage industries or serve as food for people, hence, road transportation makes easy contact between farms, industries and markets possible.
Having considered the above reasons, it will not be gainsaying that road transport is an indispensable factor for agricultural growth. Hence, road development is essential to bring agricultural products to the market places. Therefore, rural roads have special significance in agricultural growth.
Sea transportation is the movement of goods and people from one place to another by sea or any other waterways. Hence, ship engineers, as it were, are people who run or in charge of the engine in a ship. They play major roles in ensuring a smooth sea transportation and preventing unwanted mechanical or technical faults by maintaining propulsion plants during operations. These, among others, explain indispensable obligations of ship engineers.
In addition, ship engineers also perform other functions such as maintaining the sewage, the lighting, the heating, the air conditioning, the lubrication, the ventilation, the propeller shafts and propellers, the refrigeration, the fabrication of engine parts for replacement e.g. bolts, valves etc., installing the engine controls, the electrical power generation plant as well as the water system in the ship.
Other duties include managing life-saving equipment, fuel management, boat management, safety management, fire-fighting, first aid, supervising loading and off-loading hazardous materials, monitoring working conditions of engines and any other equipment so as to know whether or not they are working properly and to identify any fault, as well as engaging in pollution prevention in line with the international regulations and nautical tasks.
However, there are different positions in ship engineering division generally for
British and US vessel. Here are the positions:
1. Chief Engineer: This post is in charge of engine department.
2. Second Engineer in US it’s called 1st Assistant Engineer: This post engages in daily operations of engine department.
3. Third Engineer in US it’s called 2nd Assistant Engineer: The position takes the responsibility of maintaining the auxiliary engines and boilers.
4. Fourth Engineer in Us it’s called 3rd Assistant Engineer: This engineer unit maintains the air compressors, purifiers, pumps and auxiliary machinery.
5. Electro-technical Officer (ETO): The officer in charge maintains electrical and electronics equipment like radars, VHF and so on.
6. Electrical Officer: The officer maintains only the electronics equipment.
7. Junior Engineer
Technicians and craftsmen in ship engineer division
In ship engineer division, there are other regular skilled jobs which include:
a. Machinist or fitter: The person in charge fabricates and repairs machines.
b. Motorman: The person assists the engineer and also does menial jobs.
c. Oiler: The duty is to ensure that the machines are well lubricated.
d. Wiper: The duty is to keep the engine room clean and tidy.
Having considered the above enormous tasks of ship engineer division, it won’t be too much to say that the engineer division is indispensable in marine transportation.
Greatest volume of cargo in international trade is carried by sea transportation. This explains one of the important roles sea transportation plays in the world. Freight transportation by sea is a cheaper means by which people move their cargoes in large quantity from one nation to another. Industrial revolution becomes effective in a nation that has a well-developed marine transport. Indeed,
it’s a necessary complement to other modes of freight transportation and trading
However, ships can be classified by its propulsion and size. Below are the types of
ships in marine transportation:
1. Bulk Carriers: Like the name suggests, they are cargo ships used to carry large number of cargo. The main surface of the out-side floor of the ship is designed like a large box to carry cargoes.
2. Container Ships: Like the name suggests, it is used to carry large dry cargoes packaged into large standardized containers. To a large extent, most of these ships are moved by diesel engines.
3. Tankers: They are designed to carry liquid materials such as petroleum gas, crude oil, petroleum products, liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), liquefied natural gas (LNG), chemicals, vegetable oil, wine and so on.
4. Refrigerated Ships: These are also cargo ships used to carry perishable items that need controlled temperature to preserve its freshness and such perishable items include: fruits, meat, fish, and vegetable among others.
5. Roll-on/roll- off ships: These ships are specially designed to carry dry cargoes like automobiles, trailers, railway carriages. The ships are designed with ramps that make it easy to roll in and roll out.
6. Coastal Trading Vessels: These are used for trading activities between different areas, nations and continents. They are usually small in size.
7. Ferries: These kinds of vessels are commonly used as public transport for people living in water-side areas; they are used to move passengers and their belongings such as any form of vehicles, luggage, and equipment, among others.
8. Cruise Ships: These are used mostly by tourism industries. They are ships used purposely for pleasure and people traveling in cruise ships are people traveling for recreation.
9. Ocean Liners: These are ships used to carry large number of people from one seaport to another on a long regular- distance planned at a certain time. They are also used to carry cargoes, mails and at times, they are used for any other purpose. Ocean liners normally are strong ships designed to resist rigorous conditions they are likely to face while on ocean.
10. Cable Layers: These are undersea or submarine built vessels purposely used to lay cables for telecommunications, electricity etc. below the surface of water.
11. Tug-boats: These boats are used to tow other boats or vessels.
12. Dredgers: They are ships usually used in a depth-less area of the sea that may affect smooth operations of the ship. These ships are designed to dig out and remove the materials that sink to the bottom of the sea.
13. Barges: They are flat-bottom boats usually used to move heavy cargoes on rivers and canals. It is important to note that most barges use tugboats or towboats to operate.
14. Multi-purpose ships: They are ships used to carry various items both in bulk and small quantities and at times, they are used to move heavy items. The modern ones are now designed to carry containers.
A truck or lorry is a motor vehicle specially made to move goods from one place to another. Trucks differ in size, power and structure. There are smaller trucks and very powerful large trucks made purposely for commercial purposes to carry specific equipment like fire trucks, concrete mixers trucks, garbage trucks, etc.
List of Truck Classification by size
a. Ultra Light Truck
b. Very Light Truck
c. Light Truck
d. Medium Truck
e. Heavy Truck
f. Off Road Trucks
Trucks can also be classified according to the specific function of the body they carry.
1. Refrigerator truck: It is a truck with a device that is used to move fresh goods from one place to another. Such goods are frozen items which include: ice cream, food, and vegetables, among others.
2. Box truck: This is a cargo box-like container of a vehicle that is designed to carry goods. It’s often designed or structured in an enclosed box-shape with a door fitted at the back or the side of the truck purposely to load and to off-load cargo.
3. Concrete mixer: It is a truck with a container or body for mixing concrete by rotating in one direction in such a way that all particles therein follow the turning circle at a center point with a common velocity.
4. Dump truck: This is also known as a tipper in some English speaking countries. A dump truck is a truck with an open-box container at its back to carry loose materials like sand, gravel etc. It is also designed with elevation in front of the container to lift it up to a higher position to enable off-loading the contents through the rear fitted door.
5. Flatbed truck: This is a trailer having a flat surface to carry objects or cargo. It is the best vehicle in road transportation to carry both long and short containers from both seaport and railway stations to a desired location.
6. Semi-truck: This is a truck with a long trailer attached to the back of it.
7. Tank truck: This is also known as a tanker truck. It is designed to carry liquid materials such as: water, kerosene, petrol, diesel, among others. Some tank trucks are specially designed to carry gasses and any other hazardous and inflammable materials.
8. Tow truck: This is a truck used to tow away other vehicles that suddenly break down on the road probably due to a serious accident or a mechanical fault. Such trucks are designed with special equipment on its back to tow away stuck vehicles on our public roads.
9. Specialized heavy truck: This is also known as a heavy duty truck designed to be used for very difficult and intensive tasks such as carrying oversized equipment or objects.
10. Off-road heavy truck: This is also a very large truck designed specially to be operated away from the public roads.
picture showing traffic congestion. Source: chron.com
It is an undoubted fact that road transportation plays a notable role in nation building. A well-developed road transportation is a testimony and quality of a developed nation. An industry that has a fleet of vehicles operating within its community or city is a mark of a successful enterprise. In all ramifications, road transportation is important to individuals, an organization or an industry and to a
nation, at large.
In logistics, the importance of road transportation cannot be over-emphasized; an improper management of vehicle fleet has a great negative impact on logistics industry’s productivity as well as the customer service. Since customers are the life wire of any business, hence, poor customer service due to improper fleet management in an organization, a logistics industry or any transport service provider is a bid toward the extinction of such an organization.
Therefore, looking at the factors that can affect the smooth operation of vehicle fleet is a justification for this article. Hence, below are the factors:
1. Congestion: Unnecessary long delay due to traffic congestion will increase
travel time of a vehicle thereby causing a late delivery of goods.
2. Government Policy: Restrictions may be placed on particular trucks to ply a certain road.
3. Increase in Fuel Price: This may cause shortage of fuel thereby affecting the transport smooth operation. It can also increase the cost of transport, therefore, causing low patronage.
4. Poor Fleet Maintenance: This may cause a down-time and this will definitely affect transport operations.
5. Poor Communication: Good and effective communication leads to effective cooperation, understanding obligations and reduce unnecessary mistakes at the work-place. Poor communication, however, proves otherwise to these benefits.
Since April 2008, the United Kingdom Corporate Manslaughter Act was fully enforced on company directors and also the company’s drivers involving any company’s vehicle in any fatal road accident and any other vehicle used for business purposes. The police in the UK have stood their ground to handle any death records from road accident as ‘an unlawful killing’ and ready to deal with the offender or suspect.
The UK Police also have power to sue company directors who fail in their duties to provide frame work and guidance for their drivers to follow at work. It is interesting to note that even the private individual owned vehicles used for transportation business will also be dealt with in the same manner if they are involved in a road accident that causes the death of an innocent citizen. Nevertheless, most preventable accidents that cause the death of innocent road users make it more sensitive to enforce this law with alacrity in the UK. Therefore, under this act, directors and individual transport businesses are expected to ensure that their vehicles are adequately insured and roadworthy.
To this end, adequate fleet management of company vehicles to make our road safer and to enhance transport smooth operations as well as prevent unwanted lawsuits that are likely to arise as a result of fleet related fatality remain the inevitable reasons, among others, for writing this article. Hence, below are possible benefits of fleet management:
1. It lessens the cost of labour: With GPS fleet tracking, you can know your drivers whereabouts thereby making them be accountable to a cause or any assignment given to them.
2. It prevents potential ghost workers: The use of fleet management software
automatically freezes out ghost-workers.
3. It creates perfect contentment for drivers on duty: Proper management of vehicle fleet will surely boost the driver’s efficiency and their confidence when driving on the road.
4. It boosts customers’ satisfaction: Proper management of vehicle fleet makes the organization (transport provider) reliable and committed to satisfying their numerous customers.
5. Proper management of vehicle fleet also increases average lifetime of vehicles, thereby increasing the organizational profitability.
6. Reason for Safety: In transportation, safety comes first; one major essence of fleet management is to ensure that each vehicle is safe for smooth transport operations. It also prevents the vehicle from the chances of being lost or stolen through remote vehicle disabling systems.
7. It improves accountability: Through fleet management systems (FMS), data can be gathered to check drivers’ behavior thereby making them to be committed or
accountable to their actions.
8. It enhances drivers’ safety: When a vehicle is in good condition, it will reduce the accident rate.
9. Fuel management: Fleet management helps to prevent the wasteful use of fuel. In other words, it ensures an efficient use of fuel to complete a particular journey.
10. An efficient management of vehicle fleet by a transport company or transport provider enhances smooth operations of any given industry.