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7/8/2004



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

KCS boots up Web-based car tracing application



Kansas City Southern recently added a "Track and Trace" feature to its Web site at www.kcsi.com.

Powered by the Class I's computer platform Management Control System and compliant with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's shipment security requirements, Track and Trace enables customers to monitor their shipment and compare transit time to a trip plan. The feature refreshes data every eight hours and offers reports on inbound, outbound, "bad ordered" and "available to order" cars.

"Everything a customer would want to know about a shipment is available in a very intuitive and easy-to-use format," said Larry Stevenson, KCS senior vice president of marketing and sales, in a prepared statement.

Currently, more than 90 percent of KCS' customers use Electronic Data Interchange to conduct business, so the Class I is trying to add more online tools, said Stevenson.

Last year, the railroad introduced "Customer Request," a suite of Web-based tools that enable customers to order and release cars, create a switch bill to move a car from a lease track, reject a load and request intraplant switching.

By using the tools, customers can "more directly manage their shipments, while ensuring greater accuracy with less human intervention," said Stevenson.


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