Governor Ernie Fletcher & Kentucky Transportation Cabinet Announce Weigh Station of the 21st Century
The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet is moving forward with safety initiatives to strengthen the security of Kentucky’s highways. Today at a weigh station in Laurel County, Governor Ernie Fletcher along with acting Transportation Secretary Bill Nighbert and U.S. Congressman Hal Rogers unveiled a new system that will improve the commercial vehicle inspection process.
“As part of our continued effort to provide a safe and reliable transportation system that will strengthen our state’s security and economy, I’m pleased to dedicate this improved, highly-advanced weigh station,” said Governor Fletcher. “Our Kentucky Vehicle Enforcement inspectors and officers combined with this new technology will help keep our roads safe and our commerce moving.”
The Laurel County northbound weigh station, on I-75 between Corbin and London, is now the site of an integrated system intended to help vehicle inspectors called Integrated Safety and Security Enforcement System (ISSES). ISSES includes a radiation detection system, a license plate reader, an infrared brake monitoring system, an integrated user interface and a chemical detection unit. These features were recently added to the weigh station to detect radioactive material for safety and security, quickly and accurately identify commercial vehicles and improve the vehicle inspection process.
Federal Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) funds were used to develop the new system for the weigh station. ISSES is coming to three more sites in Kentucky via funding through federal ITS and Kentucky Homeland Security grants.
Congressman Hal Rogers is the chairman of the House Subcommittee on Homeland Security which funds homeland security efforts throughout the nation. "The technology that has been installed at this weigh station is truly cutting edge," said Congressman Rogers. "Information gained from this project and others like it will help our scientists and engineers to learn how to better protect our nation from terrorist attacks, while also helping keep unsafe vehicles and illicit drugs that are being transported unlawfully out of our communities. This project illustrates what we can accomplish by pulling together the resources of our Universities and the private and public sector."
The Transportation Cabinet partnered with Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the Kentucky Transportation Center to implement the new system. Their goal is that ISSES will help the vehicle inspectors find more unsafe or noncompliant trucks and carriers and let the safe and legal trucks keep moving.
“This is the first weigh station in the nation to integrate these types of security, safety and enforcement functions,” said Secretary Nighbert. “This system will help define the best way for state and local transportation enforcement to monitor commercial traffic,” said acting Transportation Secretary Bill Nighbert.
Systems similar to the one in Laurel County are now being tested or operated in Tennessee, South Carolina, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Florida.