ABF Freight Systems has become the first major carrier to successfully complete a U.S.-Canadian border crossing via an electronic manifest program developed by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP).

The crossing occurred at Blaine, WA, where the CBP is conducting a pilot program of a new commercial trade processing system.

The program—called the Automated Commercial Environment (ACE)—is part of a comprehensive modernization effort aimed at improving homeland security through electronic cargo processing.

Implementation of the modernization program began in the spring of 2004. Completion is expected in 2010. ABF became the first certified ACE program participant among major less-than-truckload (LTL) motor carriers on February 15, 2005.

“Participation in ACE not only provides tangible benefits for us and our customers,” said Jevon Jamieson, ABF administration and customs compliance manager, “but also supports the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in facilitating legitimate trade and securing our nation’s borders.”

Jamieson noted that benefits of the program chiefly derive from access to information technology that automates truck manifest filing, thus expediting border crossings for certified freight transporters.