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Dynamic Routing for Priority Shipments in LTL Service Networks

RAYMOND K. CHEUNG and B. MURALIDHARAN
Transportation Science
Vol. 34, No. 1 (February 2000), pp. 86-98
Published by: INFORMS
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/25768898
Page Count: 13
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Dynamic Routing for Priority Shipments in LTL Service Networks
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Abstract

Currently, less-than-truckload (LTL) carriers route both the regular and the priority shipments through their service networks using some fixed route patterns, known as load plans. In this paper, we consider an alternative strategy for routing priority shipments in LTL networks. This strategy exploits the stochasticity and dynamism embedded in the routing process where the real-time information at the current terminal (such as the loading status of trailers and the arrival of shipments) and the expected travel times from its neighboring terminals to the destination are used to route shipments adaptively. We show that this strategy can be approximated by the problem of finding dynamic shortest paths over a network with random arc costs. We develop an efficient algorithm to compute the expected travel times of these paths. These times can then be used when we implement the proposed strategy. In the numerical testing with real data, we observe that the level of service for priority shipments can be improved significantly.

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