Service for freight traffic to book crossing times on Finnish/Russian border starts

Thinking Highways
By Thinking Highways December 4, 2014 09:42

Service for freight traffic to book crossing times on Finnish/Russian border starts


The new booking service for Russia-bound traffic at the Vaalimaa border crossing point, will be available for freight traffic on 15 December 2014 and for passenger traffic on 19 January 2015. The service is free of charge for users and available at www.evpa.fi.The service is mandatory for all drivers using the Vaalimaa border crossing point only and travelling from Finland to Russia.

The booking service will be used for testing how to reduce peak hour traffic in the future. The long-term goal is to streamline traffic and increase road safety, by smoothing traffic volumes.

The booking service is based on a simple operating model. The driver plans the time when he or she wants to cross the border and books the border crossing time before arrival at the border, on the Internet at www.evpa.fi, at the self-service terminal in Rajahovi at Vaalimaa or the 24/7 call-centre. After booking the time, the driver can drive to the border crossing point. The border crossing is booked in one hour time slots, starting at the beginning of each hour. Drivers have an hour interval to arrive at the border crossing point.  The time can also be changed.

In the case of passenger traffic when drivers do not want to book a time in advance, they can sign up for the live queue at the Teboil self-service terminals located in Rajahovi, Vaalimaa. Freight drivers can sign up for the live queue at the truck waiting area in Vaalimaa, or sign up for the service at the self-service terminals located at the ports of Kotka and Hamina. Part of the service capacity is used for those in the live queue.

Cameras will identify the licence plate of the car of a driver who has booked a time and allow the driver to drive to the border crossing point. Those who have not booked a time are instructed to turn back and book a time by phone or at the Rajahovi self-service terminals.

The lighting and telematics contract of Vaalimaa is progressing according to schedule and for example, the traffic light interface needed for the booking service will be completed in December. As a result, deployment of the passenger traffic service will take place on 19 January 2015 and bookings will start on 5 January 2015. Distribution of brochures introducing the new service to drivers has been agreed with the border crossings points, with the Rajahovi petrol station and with the consulates issuing visas. The electronic booking system is a less expensive way to ease traffic congestion than construction of new roads and lanes, says Project Manager Jyrki Järvinen from Southeast Finland ELY Centre.

The border traffic booking service is part of the Finnish intelligent transport strategy. The subscriber of the service is the Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment, and the Finnish Transport Agency owns the database. GoSwift hosts the service. In addition to these participants, the project includes the Customs, Border Guards and the Ministry of Transport and Communications. The project is promoted in cooperation with the Russian border authorities.

Thinking Highways
By Thinking Highways December 4, 2014 09:42