Will Tech Be Used to Heighten Safety Standards at Ports?

Amit Maheshwari, Softlink Global CEO

In this decade I’ve seen greater emphasis on the health and safety of staff at ports like never before. The supply chain industry is reinventing itself, packing itself with innovations, from electronic data interchange to electronic submission of verified gross mass measurements.


Today, as we draw closer to uprooting the COVID-19 pandemic completely, the “safety first” motto—not just the safety of our personnel but also of our customers, our business and our future—is expected to take priority across the logistics industry, and technology will play a key role in this pursuit.


Smoother Operations, Faster Movement of Goods

Artificial Intelligence will make port operations better and more efficient. AI takes into account diverse parameters to offer reports on concerns like:


  • Port congestion in real-time
  • Route optimization
  • Weather forecasts
  • Known delays


It’s not that making these calculations is not humanly possible. You can choose to save cost by assigning a team to man these tasks, but would that be efficient?


Safety of Cargo

Internet of Things (IoT) sensor technology is emerging to give transport and logistics companies complete visibility of the insides of containers and trailers. IoT sensors are seen to deliver accurate readings, considering factors such as temperature, humidity, and material of the objects being sensed.


Ultrasonic and LED sensors are taking the task of ensuring cargo is safe and intact to the next level. Data from sensors enables carriers and port operators to quickly identify empty and loaded trailers, optimize turn time and even detect cargo theft.


More Achieved with Fewer Mistakes

Technology works best when combined with–not used to replace–human expertise. AI is the result of long hours of programming to make decisions based on numerous permutations. Machines with AI can be used to repeat complex tasks on loop without a break. AI makes the supply chain more productive and beneficial in terms of the return of investment.


Being Energy- and Environment-Conscious 

Clean and green is the need of the hour if we are to battle the climate crisis, a fast-approaching enemy whose pace we must match with our preparation. In this fight, emissions toolkits have been developed by Global Maritime Energy Efficiency Partnerships (GloMEEP) to enable countries to understand the nature of emissions from ships at sea and in ports and to formulate strategies to reduce these emissions.


Technology can help support cleaner energy and greener ports. AI can aid in the just-in-time arrival of vessels, providing benefits like reduced carbon emissions, lower port congestion, and optimized logistics.


With ports among the several pillars of the supply chain, I’m sure they will be fortified clean and green for the safety of one and all.