Pilots, truck drivers, subway operators, ship captains, pipeline controllers, airline mechanics, locomotive engineers, armed security personnel and bus drivers — among others — have an awesome responsibility to the public and we cannot let their performance be compromised by drugs or alcohol. Working closely with industry, we have, over time, seen the number of crashes and accidents linked to drug and alcohol use by safety-sensitive employees decline. Still, human risk factors remain, so there is much work to be done, and we cannot rest until we have eliminated the dangerous risk posed by illegal drug use and alcohol misuse in the transportation industries we oversee.
The Importance of Transportation Nothing is more important to civilization than transportation and communication, and, apart from direct tyranny and oppression, nothing is more harmful to the well-being of a society than an irrational transportation system.
Trade is essential to economic vitality, and transportation is essential to trade. Trade is impossible without transportation, and complex trade is impossible without modern, mechanized transportation. Until the time of railroads, transportation was treated as a "public good" that anyone within the society could use.
Even man-made systems, such as roads and canals, were usually publicly or cooperatively owned, and any charges for use were dedicated to offsetting construction and maintenance costs. Transportation and Ancient Civilization Prior to mechanized transportation, civilization that is, village centers and the surrounding farms that nourished village dwellers occurred almost entirely along rivers.
The first known civilivization was Sumer in lower Mesopotamia. The wheel made it possible for farmers to haul produce short distances over land, which in turn made larger cities possible. Although the the established empires fell after the growth of privilege and corruption weakened them as they aged, the newer, more vital neighboring empires were usually those that enjoyed excellent transportation along rivers, seas and oceans.
Egyptian kingdoms began on the upper Nile, which at the time was fertile, but the Egyptian empire came to be centered at the Nile Delta, with access to the Mediterranean.
Unlike the oceans, the Mediterranean was usually calm enough for safe navigation using early sailing technology. However, its internal transportation systems were too weak to prevent rebellions, and that empire was displaced by the Greek empire and in turn the Roman empire, both based on maritime trade and domination of the Mediterranean Sea.
The Romans also built a vast network of roads throughout its empire, financed through a combination of tolls and taxes. The roads were built by the Roman military and maintained by the local provinces and municipalities. However, road travel was slow and laborious compared to sea travel.
The Roman empire eventually lost control of regions along the North Atlantic and Baltic Seas, partly because Roman supplies and reinforcements had to either travel over mountainous land or take a very long sea route around Iberia.
American Transportation before Railroads Water transportation dictated development patterns in North America, just as it had in Europe and the Near East.
The first North American settlements, whether British, Dutch, French or Spanish, were primarily at coastal river outlets, although the Dutch created an early Indian-trading settlement at Albany, where the Mohawk flowed into the Hudson. Lawrence rivers, depending on the ability to ship products downstream.
Pennsylvania's access to the sea was via the Delaware River, which became too shallow for ocean vessels just upstream of what is now Philadelphia. Also, the Delaware merely bordered Pennsylvania, while the Schuylkill went somewhat into the state's interior.
Because the actual confluence point of the two rivers was swamp, colonial Philadelphia could not be located there.
However, the two rivers curved toward each other just above the confluence point, and Philadelphia was laid out on the only dry land that was close to both rivers.
As early transatlantic sailing vessels were few in number and relatively small and light, the depth and width of river outlets and harbors was relatively unimportant.
Gradually, however, the lure of monopoly profits, as well as the drive of land speculation, caused more and more canal projects to be undertaken by private interests, often with public subsidy.
This profiteering drive was especially strong in the United States, with crowded eastern cities and cheap, unpopulated western lands. In terms of sheer plunder, however, nothing matched the era of the railroadespecially in the United States.Saving Communities Bringing prosperity through freedom, equality, local autonomy and respect for the commons.
The Importance of Transportation. Nothing is more important to civilization than transportation and communication, and, apart from direct tyranny and oppression, nothing is more harmful to the well-being of a society than an irrational transportation system. Public transportation provides many mobility, safety, and economic benefits to people and businesses.
Beyond those key benefits, it also offers significant environmental advantages that contribute to a . Public transportation is an important contributing factor to urban sustainability. Effective transportation networks that incorporate public transit help lower a city’s per capita carbon footprint, and make cities more livable by easing commute and transportation needs and increasing accessibility.
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