Both industry and regulatory agencies face significant challenges from increased competition, rising costs, and limited resources. To remain competitive, industry must operate as efficiently as possible, with minimal delays from regulatory and enforcement activities. At the same time, public agencies must ensure safe and financially responsible motor carrier operations, with fixed or declining funding and staff levels.
Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) technology potentially holds solutions to these challenges. Appropriate use of information processing and communications can help improve safety, streamline administration of credentials and taxation, reduce congestion costs for motor carriers, and ensure regulatory compliance and equitable treatment of motor carriers. This potential cannot be realized unless ITS deployment is well coordinated, both within the state and with other states in the region and nation. South Dakota is involved in some operational tests, including the Midwest Electronic One-Stop System (which allows motor carriers to obtain credentials for several states from within their own state) and the Advanced Transportation Weather Information System (which provides road and weather information to general and commercial travelers). The state is also exploring automated routing of oversize/overweight loads and participation in the Commercial Vehicle Information System (CVIS), which ties vehicle registration to safety. These efforts have not yet been coordinated within a comprehensive business plan, however. Furthermore, other project needs have not yet been identified. South Dakota needs an ITS/CVO Business Plan to guide deployment of ITS technology to improve commercial vehicle operations.