Cargo truck drivers are about to be offered border-crossing convenience similar to the e-channel making passage easier for travellers since 2004. The HK$178 million system will eliminate procedures that now take about half an hour. To use the new Road Cargo System, or Rocars, shippers will have to provide information about the truck, cargo and date of crossing to the Customs and Excise Department 14 days in advance. Drivers will have to provide customs with a reference number and their truck registration number half an hour before the crossing. Under the Import and Export (Electronic Cargo Information) Regulation, which took effect in May last year with a grace period of 18 months, all cargo drivers must use the system from November. Customs senior staff officer Jim Kwok Kai-chiu said the system would speed up border crossings. 'Drivers can cross the border immediately instead of going through all the procedures that last half an hour,' he said. 'Currently, there's no electronic system like the e-channel for cargo clearance.' The system was outlined during a seminar at Polytechnic University. Another system, which the developers say will enhance cost-effectiveness for the logistics industry, was introduced at the seminar by Dr Kwok Siu-keung, lecturer with PolyU's department of industrial and systems engineering. The system for fleet management and cargo security was invented by the department and technology company Autotoll. Using technology such as radio-frequency identification and global positioning, it is based on an electronic locker that prevents goods from being replaced or removed during transportation. Owen Leung Ka-lai, Autotoll's business development manager, said the system was mostly aimed at logistics firms transporting goods highly sensitive to changes in temperature and humidity. 'Transporters of vaccines, seafood, medicine and the like will be our main targets,' he said. Kwok Siu-keung said the system 'will send out alert signals to the central office in case of any slight changes in temperature, and instant solutions to fix the problem will be provided'. It will be available for HK$400 a month by the end of the year.