WASH. DC, ROTTERDAM, ANTWERP, FELIXSTOWE (UK) – Major terminal operators at three of the world's largest mega ports – in Rotterdam, Antwerp, and Felixstowe - have installed automated security network infrastructure as partners in the rapidly growing Smart and Secure Tradelanes (SST) consortium to improve the end-to-end security and management of ocean-going cargo shipments. These ports, which together account for nearly half of all container shipments from Europe to the United States, now have terminals equipped with advanced tracking software and automatic identification systems, making them among the world's most secure container handling environments.
This security network links these three European mega-ports to the SST global security and information network already deployed in Asia and North America. This industry-led initiative has brought together more than 60 leading port operators, shippers and service and solution providers to define and implement solutions that provide both security and economic value to the global supply chain.
Container handling operations at the three ports, which also participate in U.S. Customs' Container Security Initiative (CSI), have been equipped with unique software that's integrated with best-of-breed, proven automatic identification technologies from multiple vendors, including bar codes, satellite tracking systems, sensors, and a variety of mechanical and electronic seals (E-Seals) that digitally lock the containers and transmit real-time alerts about tampering and other events over radio frequencies.
The SST network will use multiple wireless technologies that leverage a variety of frequencies, including 433.92 MHz - the standard frequency used by the global Total Asset Visibility network that's deployed to track shipments through over 700 nodes in 46 countries.
The TAV network, used by the U.S. government, was built and is operated by Savi Technology, an SST founding partner and leading provider of real-time solutions for supply chain security and asset management.
SST's complete integrated security solution enables its participants to have real-time visibility of the shipment location and status, physical security, automated and non-intrusive detection of security breaches, and a complete audit trail of the container's journey from origin to destination.
Today's announcement was made jointly by several founding SST members: the Strategic Council on Security Technology, a resource of international leaders committed to supply chain security improvements; Hutchison Port Holdings (HPH), which manages the bulk of operations at Europe's largest port (Rotterdam), and the United Kingdom's largest port (Felixstowe); and Hesse-Noord Natie, which operates 80 percent of the cargo volume at Europe's second largest port (Antwerp) and is a member of the PSA Group, one of the world's largest port operators, and Global Terminal & Container Services, Inc., located in the Port Jersey area of the New York/New Jersey harbor.
With the addition of Rotterdam, Felixstowe, and Antwerp, the SST security network infrastructure is currently operational at 15 major ports in Europe, the United States, Latin America and Asia that collectively handle more than 70 percent of world container traffic.
Containers equipped with E-Seals began transporting products in March from HPH's highly automated Europe Container Terminal (ECT) at the Port of Rotterdam to container handling facilities operated by Global Terminal at the port of New York/New Jersey. A demonstration of the new global security network solution will be conducted next month at an invitation-only event for dignitaries, supply chain executives and the media at the ECT, which was operationally activated last month.
"When we launched Smart and Secure Tradelanes last summer, we had a bold objective: Take decisive action now with proven solutions to counter terrorist threats by ensuring that weapons of mass destruction are not concealed in cargo containers," said Sam Banks, a founding member of the Strategic Council on Security Technology and formerly Acting Commissioner of U.S. Customs. "With today's announcement, SST now links key tradelanes between Europe, the United States and Asia in a network that reduces security threats, improves the efficient flow of container traffic and conforms with international security rules," added Banks, who is Senior Vice President at Sandler, Travis Trade Advisory Services in Washington D.C.
"We're very pleased that HPH's port facilities in Rotterdam and Felixstowe are the first in Europe to be outfitted with SST's proven security technologies," said John Meredith, HPH's Group Managing Director. "We already have the most automated and efficient operations, and now through our partnership with SST we can offer additional services to our trade communities by providing real-time security." HPH operations at the Port of Hong Kong, which handles the world's heaviest volume of containers, have already successfully shipped more than 100 "smart containers" through the SST security network this year to ports on the U.S. West Coast.
Peter Ong, Chief Operating Officer, Hesse-Noord Natie, said: "As a key service provider in the Northern European market and a significant node in the Europe-US trade route, we will continue to lead in cutting-edge solutions that ensure security, speed and efficiency. We are excited to be involved in the worldwide SST initiative."
"As one of the leading terminals in the Port of New York/New Jersey, it is critical that we continue to pursue increased container and terminal security," said Dave Brady, Administrative Vice President of Global Terminal and Container Services. "With SST providing an avenue for improving container security, we have increased confidence that our personnel are handling secure cargo, which in turn enables us to continue to provide the level of service our customers have come to expect."
The Strategic Council on Security Technology is an international assembly of top executives from the world's largest port operators, major logistics technology providers, military logistics leaders, former public officials and prominent transportation consultancies. For more information on SCST, please visit www.scst.info .