Statistical analysis of vessel waiting time and lockage time on the Upper Mississippi River Academic Article uri icon


  • © 2015 Macmillan Publishers Ltd. The Upper Mississippi River (UMR) is an important artery for transporting export-destined grains from the north central United States to lower Mississippi River ports. The increased traffic on the UMR system has led to increases in congestion, delays at locks and longer vessel proceeding times. We analyze systematically the arrival, waiting and lockage time of vessels at the locks of UMR. We construct linear and duration models of the lockage process and show the importance of modeling the delay time and lockage time as two separate processes. We find that real time traffic intensities are the most statistically significant factors in predicting delays at the locks. We also propose a non-parametric model of traffic intensity, which allows us to use the proposed lockage model for prediction purposes. This model can be useful to relieve congestion and increase the carrying capacity in the UMR system, and provide insight into the traffic and lock operating policies.

author list (cited authors)

  • Zhang, Y. Y., Chang, M., & Fuller, S. W.

citation count

  • 7

publication date

  • October 2015