Identifying and Classifying Goods Vehicles
A BWIM system is capable of measuring the loading and spacing of a vehicle's axles; it is often desirable to use this information to identify the type of vehicle.
By classifying vehicles we can infer useful data about their purposes and loads.
For instance, by identifying concrete mixers and tipper trucks, we can resolve construction traffic from goods traffic.
By identifying cars, tractors and buses, we can obtain a picture of the makeup of traffic accross the bridge, and its congestion patterns.
By identifying the tractor unit and the class of iso-container we can estimate the goods load.
Therefore, a system that can classify vehicles allows an informative economic analysis of bridge traffic.
In fact, there are many classification systems in use, these may differ because of their intended application or because of differing national standards.
This document is intended to explain the main classification systems within the context of BWIM.
We will discuss five systems, starting from the coarsest:
- The legal definitions that hold within the European Economic Area
- The system suggested for BWIM in the COST 323 guidelines
- The 2003 Guide produced by the UK Department of Transport.
- User defined systems
- Advanced classification systems
All of these systems are defined in terms of weight or vehicle dimension, in the final section we shall define values for these parameters for typical vehicles.