The American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI) has announced its top research priorities for 2018. The Research Advisory Committee of the ATRI deliberated on the list of research topics in March which was approved by ATRI’s board of directors earlier this month.

In this blog post, we shed some light on the ATRI’s top research priorities for 2018.

Urban planning

The ATRI President Rebecca Brewster shared that the institute is looking to identify ways for incorporating freight delivery into “smart city design approaches.”

The ATA’s spokesman Sean McNally said that the ATRI’s research would prove instrumental in ensuring the safety of truckers and preserving the interests of the trucking industry in Washington and across the country.

Autonomous vehicles and technologies

The ATRI also featured autonomous technologies in its priority list, with the board agreeing to scrutinize the role of state government regulations on autonomous vehicles as well as the impact of autonomous technologies on truckers.

The committee also announced that the institute is finding ways to determine the best deployment strategies for autonomous technologies and vehicles.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration recently started gathering feedback on existing regulations that could affect the development and rollout of autonomous vehicles.

Safety concerns

Inconsistencies in CDL testing were also discussed in the meeting. And the committee agreed to conduct a feasibility check on CDL testing requirements in the United States, as well as to develop universal testing procedures that will prove beneficial to everyone.

The institute is also looking to review the accuracy and consistency of commercial motor vehicle crash data both at the local and state levels.

Marijuana intoxication testing

The last item on the list was identifying the best practices for marijuana intoxication testing.

The ATRI plans to carry out its research across the United States of America and overseas to determine the recommended maximum intoxication levels and to gather best practice recommendations on driver sobriety testing.

“Framework for Infrastructure Funding”

The ATRI’s 2018 priority list is in line with the organization’s “Framework for Infrastructure Funding” research published in November. The research concluded that a federal fuel tax increase is the best solution for implementing a large-scale infrastructure program.

Speaking about the program, Brewster confirmed that they would include trucking in the conversation. She said, “They really do cover the landscape. We need to make sure trucking is part of that conversation.”