AKRON—Norfolk Southern Railway Co. will use Goodyear's TPMS Plus (Tire Pressure Monitoring System) technology to monitor its intermodal trailer fleet across North America.
Goodyear said that the TPMS Plus' on-vehicle sensors monitor tire conditions in real time, helping fleets identify and address issues immediately such as air leaks, low pressure and abnormal temperature. Once a potential issue is detected, Goodyear Fleet HQ can help to reroute the driver to a Goodyear service network location or dispatch roadside assistance to perform maintenance.
Norfolk Southern used the pilot program successfully at its intermodel operations, then at its facility in Fairburn, Ga., earlier this year. The company will add the technology at facilities in Illinois, Indiana and Florida over the next several months, according to Goodyear.
Johnny McIntosh, Goodyear's integrated solutions and tire management director, said the Norfolk Southern deployment represents the largest fleet installation to date for the Akron-based tire maker.
"Our collaboration with Norfolk Southern showcases Goodyear's ability to develop adaptable technology solutions that meet our customers' needs," McIntosh said. "TPMS Plus allows fleets like Norfolk Southern to more efficiently protect and maintain their tires, preventing costly tire-related roadside breakdowns and time off the road."
Norfolk Southern operates one of the nation's most extensive intermodal networks, serving customers in 22 states and the District of Columbia via 19,500 miles of railroad and connections to every major eastern seaport between New York City and Jacksonville, Fla.; the Gulf ports of Mobile, Ala., New Orleans, and St. Bernhard, La.; Great Lake ports; and river ports in Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee.
NS's network of service also extends into Canada, Mexico, and abroad thanks to partnerships with other rail carriers, trucking companies, and ports.
Andrew Knouse, Norfolk Southern's group manager, road equipment maintenance and planning, said the system has helped improve the company's maintenance process.
"In a sample of 20 chassis during the initial weeks of installs, we collected over 10 occurrences that prevented further failures," Knouse said.
"For example, TPMS Plus helped Norfolk Southern provide a new level of customer service by providing an alert that a tire was losing air and required attention. We, in turn, notified the driver of the problem, and the driver was able to pull over and have the tire addressed, preventing further damage to the tire and delay in his route."
TPMS Plus features GPS-enabled theft detection, battery backup for hardware and integrations into existing fleet maintenance systems.