SEMSIM represents the first time ever that the four largest road agencies in Southeast Michigan have joined forces. For the first time, they are working collectively for the common good of the region’s motorists. This process has opened channels of communication between the agencies at all levels. Now, for instance, a garage manager in Wayne County might get on the phone to the Road Commission for Oakland County or the City of Detroit DPW to see how his counterpart handles a particular issue. The effort has also served to create some uniformity among the agencies. They now use some of the same types of equipment, and so have a shared body of knowledge about the equipment. Finally, the SEMSIM partners have agreed that the four agencies’ trucks can, when appropriate, cross jurisdictional lines to help each other. While each agency’s own roads remain their top priorities, there may be times when a truck could cross into another jurisdiction to assist. For example, a manager for the Road Commission of Macomb County may receive a police report that a bridge surface in the southwestern portion of the county is freezing over (bridges typically freeze before road surfaces because of the cold air under the bridge). He also notices that all of his trucks are busy in other areas, and none is close by. At the same time, the manager notices on his computer screen that a Road Commission for Oakland County (RCOC) truck is driving near the border between Oakland and Macomb counties not far from the bridge in Macomb County. He also notices that the RCOC truck is not salting or plowing (the sensors
in the truck feed this information to the computer). The manager then phones the RCOC manager and asks if the RCOC truck can swing into Macomb County and salt the bridge surface, saving time and helping prevent accidents. The RCOC manager agrees, noting his truck is just patrolling for icy spots.