Understanding and Modeling the Impacts of COVID-19 on Freight Trucking Activity

Research Team: Stephen Ritchie (lead), Andre Tok, and Guoliang Feng

UC Campus(es): UC Irvine

Problem Statement: COVID-19 has brought about significant, long term changes to freight trucking trip and travel patterns, with impacts varying by industry sectors. The complexity and significance of these impacts, however, cannot be fully understood with conventional metrics from standalone data sources.

Project Description: This research has two phases. The first phase will develop advanced freight activity metrics to measure the impacts of COVID-19 on goods movement, including efficiency, with a focus on portside truck movements. The study will employ multiple sources of conventional as well as state-of- the-art data sources to explore changes to truck traffic volumes, tour and routing patterns, and intermodal freight payloads. Data collected will include truck axle classification and weights, body classification, travel patterns, traffic volumes and congestion levels. The second phase of the research will leverage ITS-Irvine’s recently developed commodity-based California Statewide Freight Forecasting Model (CSFFM), ITS-Irvine’s Truck Activity Monitoring System, and the California Statewide Travel Demand Model to explore the future impacts of COVID-19 on goods movement.

Status: In Progress

Budget: $50,000