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CN modifies BIT reservation system

TORONTO, Ont. -- CN has announced plans to modify its Brampton Intermodal Terminal reservation process, starting Ja...


TORONTO, Ont. — CN has announced plans to modify its Brampton Intermodal Terminal reservation process, starting Jan. 18, 2005.

The following information summary has been issued by CN:

“The arrival patterns at CN Brampton are now such that the inability to manage the volume arriving at the terminal by destination is causing congestion issues more traffic than can be handled on a daily basis is arriving at the terminal creating terminal inefficiencies and a deteriorating level of service.

“In order to position CN Brampton intermodal to handle the expected growth in international trade CN is implementing a reservation process for all export traffic (loads and empties) that recognizes destination when providing appointments.

“Permanent Solution

“CN has been developing an enhanced version of the current gate appointment system. This on-line system will require the users to input their service request (arrival date at the terminal, proposed arrival time, service required (drop, pick-up or both), service validation information (unit to be picked up, booking number to be dropped off, etc.) and the system will either accept their request or offer them alternates.

“When fully functional this system: Enables customers’ traffic (both empties and loads) to flow into CN terminals in a planned manner thereby reducing inefficiencies associated with congestion and reducing barriers to growing international trade; accepts appointments to pick up imports only for traffic that is scheduled to be available (this will enable customers to book their pick-ups sooner thereby reducing their terminal dwell); provides a means for customer to ensure cut-off traffic is protected (provided traffic is identified in advance); establishes a firm level of service from CN; extends the period wherein customers may book appointments by limiting appointments to requestors that can confirm traffic; makes more appointments available for booking by simplifying the process for CN to identify and address the abusers; allows the trucker to confirm their booking number is valid before arriving at the gate.

“Forecasted availability for this enhanced system is Q2 2005.

“Due to the nature of the current level of terminal arrivals an interim version of this process will be implemented effective 18 January 2005.

“Interim Solution – Brampton

“Any carter arriving at CN Brampton with a bare chassis to pick-up an import container will only require a gate appointment to enter the terminal during the requested hour. There will be minor changes to the on-line gate appointment system (see below).

“Any carter arriving at CN Brampton with an export or steamship repositioning container to drop off (whether or not that carter is also picking up a container) will require a reservation (to drop off the container) and a gate appointment (to enter the terminal during the requested hour).

“There will be no change to the current process for requesting reservations for steamship loads or empties destined to the US (other than Elimarte NJ –Dockside), to Canadian domestic terminals, or for movement on genset service. A gate appointment will continue to be required.

“A new process to request reservations for steamship loads or empties destined to Canadian ports or Dockside NJ will apply for traffic to be dropped in Brampton as of Tuesday 18 January 2005. A gate appointment will continue to be required.

“Export Reservations

“There will be no change to the current process for requesting reservations for steamship loads or empties destined to the US (other than Elimarte NJ
— Dockside), to Canadian domestic terminals, or for movement on genset service.
A gate appointment will continue to be required.

“The following process will be used to request reservations to drop steamship loads or empties (including empties requested by the steamship lines to street turn into Brampton or MISC) destined to Canadian ports or Elimarte NJ (Dockside) in Brampton as of Tuesday 18 January 2005. A gate appointment will continue to be required.

“Requests for reservations must be e-mailed to imx-osm@cn.ca. The request must include:

The terminal where the container will be dropped (Brampton)
The quantity to be dropped
The booking number to be dropped
The requested date to ingate at the terminal
The unit length (either 20ft or 40+ft)

“Requests to drop containers on their cut-off day will be afforded priority access to reservations provided the request is received prior to 11:00 Eastern, two business days before the reservation date. Cut-off requests received after 11:00 Eastern will be handled on an ‘as available’ basis. It is important for the industry to book their requests for cut-off traffic early.

“If the market changes such that CN begins to receive more cut-off day requests within the priority period than can be handled within the design block, additional restrictions may be developed.

“Requests for non cut-off day traffic will be handled on a first-come, first served basis. Requests may be received anytime up to one week in advance of the reservation date.

“Registered carters, freight forwarders or the steamship lines may make reservation requests. The party that books the reservation does not need to be the same party as (that) booking the gate appointment. However, the party booking the reservation is responsible for compliance (i.e. responsible if the container is not tendered to the terminal).

“One reservation number is required for each container to be dropped off at the terminal (i.e. a carter delivering two 20ft containers requires two reservation numbers).

“The container must be delivered to the terminal prior to cut-off on the day of the reservation. The reservation number will not be valid on any other day.

“All containers with reservations are expected to be delivered to the terminal on their reservation day. Companies that do not deliver containers as per their reservations will be warned, and may have their privilege of booking reservations cancelled. Customers that lose their reservations privilege must have someone else book their reservations (e.g. a carter that loses their privilege must have their forwarder book their reservations).

“Reservations may be cancelled without penalty provided they are cancelled prior to 10:00 Eastern Time on the business day prior to the reservation day.

“Empty containers with a repositioning booking to be shipped to Robert’s Bank BC
(DeltaPort) are presently delivered to CN MISC, where CN transfer the containers to CN Brampton. Customers with a repositioning booking for Robert’s Bank will be required to secure a reservation for the day they wish to return the empty to CN MISC.

“Gate Appointments

“Carters dropping steamship traffic at CN Brampton, and carters picking up steamship traffic from CN Brampton, will continue to require an hourly gate appointment to enter the terminal.

“The on-line gate appointment system will continue to open at 10:30 Eastern Time on the business day prior to the appointment day.

“Only one type of appointment will be offered – it will be renamed ‘Customer
Use.’ The second appointment type will be renamed “For CN Use Only” and will not provide appointments.

“Users must select their requested appointment day/hour in the usual manner. If the user is requesting an appointment to pick-up a container from the terminal (and will not be dropping any containers at the terminal), the initials and number of the container (or containers when two-20ft containers are to be picked up) must be input.

“If the user is requesting an appointment to drop off a container at the terminal (whether or not a container will be picked up by the same driver), the reservation number of the container (or containers when two-20ft containers are to be dropped) must be input.

“Container initials and numbers to be picked up or reservation numbers for containers to be dropped must confirmed in the app
ointment system prior to
11:00 Eastern Time (this is a change from the current 14:00 Eastern Time). Appointments booked after 11:00 Eastern on the business day prior to the appointment day must have the supporting information input at the time of making the appointment.

“Gate appointments that do not have the supporting information input by 11:00
Eastern on the day prior to the appointment date will be cancelled.

“The supporting information on the gate appointment must match the work the driver plans to perform at the terminal.

“The gate appointment must be made for the same day as the reservation.

“Each driver will continue to require one gate appointment whether picking up one or two containers, dropping off one or two containers, or a combination thereof.

“The party booking the gate appointment does not have to be the same party as booked the reservation. However the party booking the gate appointment will be responsible for compliance to the appointment (i.e. will be responsible for any penalties for non-compliance).

“Gate appointments may be cancelled without penalty provided they are cancelled at lease two hours prior to the start of the appointment window. Customers that frequently change the activity associated with their gate appointments will have their privileges cancelled.

“Drivers that arrive at the terminal with a container to drop without a reservation number associated with their gate appointment will be turned away prior to the gate.

“Drivers that arrive at the gate with an appointment that was made within the hour may be delayed until their appointment number is verified. This is necessary to prevent abuse of the appointment process.

“The stand-by lane will be eliminated. All shipments arriving at the terminal must have a reservation and an appointment. Emergency situations can be directed to the Gate Information Line (866-503-6120).

“Transactions at MISC do not require a gate appointment.

“This process will be effective as of Monday 17 January 2005 for use for booking appointments effective Tuesday 18 January 2005.

“Important Points to Note:

“One gate appointment is required per driver. However one reservation is required for each container to be dropped at the terminal (therefore a customer delivering two-20ft containers will require two reservation numbers but one gate appointment.

“The unit to be picked up must match the unit submitted with the gate appointment. The booking number of the reservation must match the booking number of the container to be dropped. If the numbers do not match the driver will be refused access to the terminal.

“Robert’s Bank-destined empties will require a reservation number if they are to be dropped at MISC, or they will require a reservation number and a gate appointment if they are to be dropped at Brampton.

“Reservation numbers will be 10 characters long and begin with RV. The last digit will denote the day of entry to the terminal. The gate appointment number will be five numbers, with the first two representing the hour of entry to the terminal.

“Presently traffic primarily arrives at CN Brampton primarily throughout a five-day week. Moving forward it is likely that some of this traffic will be unable to secure sufficient reservations on weekdays.

“Certain low-volume destinations (Saint John NB, Dockside NJ, Vancouver –
Centennial Pier, Vancouver – Fraser-Surrey Docks) do not warrant daily rail service.

“Reservations to tender traffic at CN Brampton for export via these ports will be offered only on the day of rail service.

“Priority access to cut-off day appointments will be provided for requests received prior to 11:00 Eastern Time, two business days prior to the reservation day.

“Reservation requests for cut-off traffic received after this time will be processed on an ‘as available’ basis. There is no guarantee that late requests for cut-off traffic will be accommodated.

“With the introduction of the temporary process access to the terminal will be restricted to the day of reservation (note the exception for genset service below).

“By 1 April 2005 access to the terminal will be restricted to the selected arrival window (arrival windows will be one-hour in size). Customers should use this three-month interim period to prepare for selected arrival windows.

“In order to permit pre-tripping of reefers prior to genset service, reefers with genset reservations are permitting to enter the terminal six days in advance of the day of reservation. This process will continue.

“The drivers template in used at CN Brampton will be revised. Attached is the new version including a place to note the reservation number.

“CN will use the email ID supplied with the request for a gate appointment ID as the point of contact for the company. If this contact email ID changes (for example due to personnel changes), it is important for the company to advise CN of the new contact e-mail ID.


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1 Comment » for CN modifies BIT reservation system
  1. Mike McFall says:

    Cn should return to the card system …. better yet chalk and a black board would work better . At least then it will not cost the carrier quite as much as it does now .

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