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Help with DTOD

 1. What is DTOD?

The Defense Table of Official Distances (DTOD) is the official source for worldwide distance information used by the Department of Defense (DoD). DTOD provides distances for all DoD personal property, all DoD freight, and PCS/TDY travel needs. It generates point-to-point distances and routes for origin/destination pairs of locations. The DTOD website’s distance calculation and mapping functions provide road segment and cumulative distances over the network of truck-usable highways and roads in North America, South America, Europe, Africa, Oceania, and Asia.

 2. DTOD Top Frequently Asked Questions

Question:

Do I have to take the route DTOD specifies?

Answer:

No, by no means do you have to take the route DTOD specifies, however the mileage calculated from the DTOD route for your travel will be the offical mileage for which you will get reimbursed.

Question:

Who is authorized for a DTOD account?

Answer:

TO BE AUTHORIZED YOU MUST BE, ONE OF THE FOLLOWING:

•A military member or employee of the Department of Defense (DoD) engaged in operational, financial, or entitlement functions related to military travel, freight, or personal property movements.

•A contractor designated by the DoD to support the functions cited above.

•A person traveling on official DoD business.

•A DoD Commercial Carrier authorized by the vendor of the DTOD commercial software (via yearly purchased software license).

 3. How do I lookup distance on the new DTOD?

Question:

How do I lookup distance on the new DTOD?

Answer:

  • 1. Go to https://dtod.sddc.army.mil
  • 2. Click ETA Sign In.
  • 3. Logon to ETA page as usual. Once logged on, DTOD will open.
  • 4. On the top right side of the webpage, hold mouse over Calculate Distances, and then click Trip Entry. The Trip Entry Screen opens.
  • 5. Under Route Options select either Miles or Kilometers.
  • 6. Under the Route Type, make sure the appropriate type of travel is selected. By default, Personal Property Travel is selected.
  • 7. Under County Code Format, select appropriate version. By default, FIPS is selected.
  • 8. In the Origin box, type in the place where you would like to start (i.e.,: Fairfax, VA). If you are calculating distances in the US, make sure you have the appropriate spelling for the city and the correct state abbreviation, or use zip code. If you wish to lookup a location using a SPLC be sure to change the City/State/Zip dropdown box to SPLC.
  • 9. In the Destination field, type in the place you are going to. If you are calculating distances in the US, make sure you have the appropriate spelling for the city and the correct state abbreviation, or use zip code. If you wish to lookup a location using a SPLC be sure to change the City/State/Zip dropdown box to SPLC.
  • 10. Under the Region, make sure you have the appropriate continent (ie: for the US, North America should be selected).
  • 11. Click the Lookup button at the bottom of both the Origin and Destination boxes to verify the correct origin and destination are selected from the dropdown list.
  • 12. Once you have verified both locations by using the Lookup buttons, you will see a Get Distance button at bottom of page. Click the Get Distance button. Distance information will be listed on top right of website.
  • 13. Click on the Get Map & Distances Button to retrieve map and directions information.

 4. BatchProcessing?

Question:

What is BatchProcessing?

Answer:

DTOD batch processing executes distance calculations in a group or batch. This process eliminates one at a time queue origin/destination entries. Batch processing can handle up to a 2mg batch at once without idle connectivity. The request will be processed and the results forwarded to a designated government email address within 5-15 minutes.

Question:

What are BatchProcessing Benefits?

Answer:

•It can shift the time of job processing to when the computing resources are less busy (load balance).

•It avoids idling the computing resources.

•Rather than running one program multiple times to process one transaction each time, batch processes will run the program only once for many transactions, reducing system overhead.

  INSTRUCTIONS:

Step-by-Step Instructions for performing a BATCH Request:

1. Roll cursor over Calculate Distances—Select “Batch Processing”

2. Enter valid government email address, where the batch process results should be forwarded

3. Select which data format you prefer for the batch request to display; “Zip Codes” or “SPLC”

4. Select Region, Route Type, and Route Option Unit (Miles/Kilometers)

5. Click browse to select file; file must be in (.txt) format.

A. Example: Origin – space – destination:

62220 62901

90210 41101

62220 62901

90210 41101

78452 68524

B. Example: If you want to include a name identifier:

62220 62901 Janice

90210 41101 Corey

62220 62901 Dennis

90210 41101 Jim

78452 68524 James

6. Click Upload File

7. Request will be forwarded to the email address provided in Step 2, within 5-15 minutes.

Example SPLC/ZIP txt file can be located HERE under the download section at the bottom of the page.

 5. Why Does The Site Look Broken?

If you are having trouble viewing DTOD and the site looks broken/jumbled you probably have your Internet Explorer "Compatability Mode" selected. You can turn this off by clicking the small paper icon in the browser search bar.

 6. What is Official Distance?

Official Distance is the DoD recognized driving distance between two locations that will be used to determine reimbursement for Travel or Payment of Billing.

 7. How Often is DTOD Updated?

Updates to the entirety of the DTOD data coincide with the annual release of DTOD on October 1st of each year. ZIP Code information and Standard Point Location Code (SPLC) at that time are current as of August.

Each April, DTOD is updated with additions to SPLC or ZIP Codes as of January. It is important that the Official Distance not change over the course of the year, so modifications to existing locations or roads cannot be made until the October release.

The Data Vendor receives updates from the National Motor Freight Traffic Association (NMFTA) and US Postal Service on a semi-annual basis and DTOD is updated as quickly as is feasible.

Any changes made by the USPS will be incorporated into DTOD as soon as the update process catches up. When ZIP Code to City Name matching is out of date, the OFFICIAL DISTANCE is the distance determined using the locations found in DTOD.

 8. Register for DTOD Access

Electronic Transportation Acquisition (ETA) is the single sign-on to manage access to the DTOD Website:

If you Already have an ETA Account you can request to add DTOD access to your existing account HERE.

If you Need to Register for an ETA Account you can access the ETA registration form HERE.

 9. Register for a New ETA Account

If you do not have an existing ETA User ID and Password please follow the instructions below:

TO REGISTER FOR AN ETA LOGIN AND PASSWORD:

From the ETA screen eta.sddc.army.mil. You may need to accept the security certificate from the ETA website.

Click the Register for First Time link in the top left corner of the page. The New User Registration form for ETA page will be displayed.

On the New User Registration for ETA screen, scroll down to the bottom of the page to the Generalsection. On the left side of the screen, put a check in the box next to DTOD.

Click on the down arrow to select a DTOD role. If you are a commercial freight carrier select Carrier. All other users should select DOD User.

Scroll down the page and click Generate Request Form.

Enter your information on the registration form making sure to complete all the information marked with an asterisk (*) next to it. (Note: The email address you provide on the registration screen will be used to send you your ETA password. For security reasons, an individual email address must be used.)

Click on Submit Request. Confirm your email address is correct by clicking OK on the pop-up window that is displayed.

new screen will appear, displaying your ETA DTOD Request ID. This Request ID will become your ETA User ID upon approval. Make a note of the User ID that is listed on the page. A confirmation email message containing the information on this page will be emailed to you.

Your request will be forwarded to the SDDC Systems Response Center (SRC) for approval. Allow 5-7 business days for the request to be processed.

10. Already have an ETA account? Add DTOD to your account.

If you already have an ETA account and would like to add DTOD, please follow the instructions below:

TO ADD DTOD ACCESS TO YOUR ETA ACCOUNT:

From the ETA screen eta.sddc.army.mil. You may need to accept the security certificate from the ETA website.

Click the Register for Add’l Systems link at the top of the page.

Enter you ETA User ID and Password

The Register for Additional ETA Systems page will be displayed.

On the Register for Additional ETA Systems screen, scroll down to the bottom of the page to the General section. On the left side of the screen, put a check in the box next to DTOD.

Click on the down arrow to select a DTOD role. If you are a commercial freight carrier select Carrier. All other users should select DOD User.

Scroll down the page and click Generate Request Form.

Enter your information on the registration form making sure to complete all the information marked with an asterisk (*) next to it. (Note: The email address you provide on the registration screen will be used to send you your ETA password. For security reasons, an individual email address must be used.)

Click on Submit Request. Confirm your email address is correct by clicking OK on the pop-up window that is displayed.

A new screen will appear, displaying your ETA DTOD Request ID. This Request ID will become your ETA User ID upon approval. Make a note of the User ID that is listed on the page. A confirmation email message containing the information on this page will be emailed to you.

Your request will be forwarded to the SDDC Systems Response Center (SRC) for approval. Allow 5-7 business days for the request to be processed.

11. Who is authorized for a DTOD account?

TO BE AUTHORIZED YOU MUST BE:

  • A military member or employee of the Department of Defense (DoD) engaged in operational, financial, or entitlement functions related to military travel, freight, or personal property movements.
  • A contractor designated by the DoD to support the functions cited above.
  • A person traveling on official DoD business.
  • A DoD Commercial Carrier authorized by the vendor of the DTOD commercial software.

12. Carrier Access

DTOD is now available on a limited basis to DoD Commercial Carriers in order to provide a final authoritative check of the Official Distance.

Commercial Carrier Access is coordinated through ALK Technologies, the underlying DTOD Distance Product Vendor. This is discussed in more detail under Carrier Licensing.

13. Requesting Carrier Access

User authentication for the DTOD Website is managed through the SDDC’s Electronic Transportation Acquisition (ETA) System. DoD Commercial Carriers may request access to use DTOD functionality to be added to an existing ETA account or may request a new ETA account with the express purpose of accessing the DTOD Website. The Vendor of the underlying distance product must approve any non-DoD Users to use DTOD.

For more information please refer to the Help Topics about Register for DTOD Access and Carrier Licensing.

14. Carrier Licensing

Final approval for Non-DoD users to access the DTOD Website rests with the Vendor of the underlying distance product, ALK Technologies.

Account information provided by Carriers requesting access to DTOD through the SDDC's Electronic Transportation Acquisition (ETA) System is sent to ALK Technologies for their review and access privileges are set based on their response.

The version of the DTOD Product is updated annually in October and CARRIER ACCESS TO THE DTOD WEBSITE MUST BE RE-APPROVED EACH YEAR.

15. The Captcha Image

A commonly used technology that embeds a code-word in an image containing a scramble pattern in order to prevent outside systems from programmatically using web pages designed specifically for people to use, something called Screen Scraping.

DTOD uses the Captcha Image for two reasons.

  • To prevent unanticipated levels of use arising from Screen Scraping that would threaten the availability and degrade the performance of the DTOD Website.
  • To comply with the DTOD license requirements for the underlying distance product in order for the DTOD Website to be made available to non-DoD users.

16. Route Directions

The route used by DTOD is obtained by clicking the Map & Directions button on the Trip Entry page. This information is provided primarily so that users can check the DTOD route.

The DTOD database does not extend to the Street Address level. The road name Local appears when the route has left the DTOD road network. DTOD draws a straight line from a location that is off the road network to the closest road.

Travellers are not required to follow the DTOD directions.

17. Software Requests

DTOD licensed software releases are highly restricted. DTOD provides copies of a DVD version of the mileage calculation software only in cases of “mission critical” requirements (extremely limited or "no" Internet connectivity).

The Software Request Process is as follows:

  • Complete the Software Request Form on the DTOD Website.
  • The DTOD Point of Contact may contact you if needed.
  • You will be notified via e-mail or telephone after your request has been reviewed.

18. SSL Certificates

DTOD uses HTTPS and a Security Certificate Warning that must be accepted as you first visit the site.

The Security Certificate Warning appears to be a Pop Up window, but it comes from the browser, informing a user that they need to accept a DoD PKI Server Certificate and trust the DoD Certificate Authority before accessing a site.

Users may establish this trust by accepting the Security Certificate Warning. Note that trust must be given for both the DTOD Website and the ETA Website and users may have to accept the certificate again when logging in.

It is possible to download the DoD Root Certificate, which will enable a user to skip the Certificate Warning for both DTOD and ETA. The download and installation instructions may be found on the ETA Site at the link below.

DOD Class 3 PKI - Download Root CA Certificate

19. Industry

The Department of Defense (DoD) has mandated the use of DTOD as the source for mileage-based Freight and Personal Property transportation payments. The source and method used by commercial carriers to determine mileage is their individual choice.

However, the DTOD version effective at the time of shipment pickup is the only one valid for transportation mileage calculation reimbursement.

A new version of DTOD is released and effective on or after 1 October of each year.

PC*MILER®, the commercial version of DTOD for North America, is normally released annually in October. Carriers may use the PC*MILER® version released in April to estimate mileage for DoD shipments that are to be picked up on or after the 1 October effective date of DTOD. To assure the synchronization of DTOD and PC*MILER®, ALK also releases an update of PC*MILER® after the DTOD annual release. Information about PC*MILER® can be obtained via the PC*MILER® Website at:www.pcmiler.com, or by contacting ALK Technologies, Inc., 457 N. Harrison St, Princeton, NJ 08540, ATTN: PC*MILER Sales, Phone: 1-800-377-6453, Fax: 1-609-683-0290.

20. State and Country Codes

DTOD uses two-letter Federal Information Processing (FIPS) and Geopolitical Entities Names and Codes (GENC) abbreviations to identify the country of a location. These codes more closely match the English Language name for the associated country than the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) codes that are more commonly used over-seas.

DTOD is the authority for land distances exceeding fifty miles and we do not have location or road data for islands smaller than fifty miles.

The U.S. Federal Government has been identifying different country locations using a two-character code based on a standard known as the FIPS 10-4. The FIPS 10-4 standard was identified to be replaced by the GENC standard, providing an authoritative set of country codes and names for use by the Federal Government for information exchange, under the profile of ISO 3166.

21. Personal Property

The Personal Property Route Type is used to determine the Official Distance for Commercial Personal Property shipments.

Help Items under this topic relate to specific rules governing use of DTOD to determine Official Personal Property distances.

22. Freight

Commercial Carrier Shipments of DoD Freight fall into one of these three categories.

Overweight A shipment will be considered to be overweight when the max of 80,000 pounds gross vehicle weight is exceeded . OW/OD Formula W=500(LN/N-1 + 12N + 36); where W=overall gross weight on any group of 2 or more consecutive axles to the nearest 500 pounds. L=distance in feet between the extreme of any group of 2 or more consecutive axles, and N=number of axles in the group under consideration.

Hazmat A substance or material that has been determined by the Secretary of Transportation to be capable of posing an unreasonable risk to health, safety, and property when transported in commerce and that has been so designated.

General A shipment will be considered to be General if consisting of 80,000 pounds total vehicle weight or less of General Cargo.

General Cargo Cargo that is susceptible for loading in general, nonspecialized stowage areas or standard shipping containers; e.g., boxes, barrels, bales, crates, packages, bundles, and pallets.

Help Items under this topic relate to specific rules governing use of DTOD to determine Official Freight distances.

23. PCS/TDY

DTOD is used for Official Permanent Change of Station (PCS) and Temporary Duty (TDY) Travel.

Guidlines governing the use of DTOD to obtain Official Travel distance and the application of that distance is determined by the Per-Diem Commitee and documented in the Joint Federal Travel Regulations.

Help Items under this topic relate to specific rules governing use of DTOD to determine Official Travel distances.

24. Do IT Yourself (DITY)

The DITY Type is used to determine the Official Distance for Do It Yourself (DITY) movements.

Help Items under this topic relate to specific rules governing use of DTOD to determine Official DITY distances.

25. The Distance is Wrong?

While the Official Distance may not match an Odometer reading or use an untenable route or even contain an error, it is still the Official Distance.

Road distance/time/quality database undergoes a continuous update and review cycle. DTOD is based on a snapshot of this data to ensure a consistent Official Distance for the entire year. Any changes in roads from the snapshot time to your travel time may also cause differences.

DTOD is not an Address to Address model and does not contain data for all "Street" level streets. When DTOD routes to or from a Location that is not on a road in the DTOD database it draws the shortest straight line between the Location and the closest road. This does not always match the actual road.

In DTOD, each City has a default ZIP Code and each ZIP Code is a single point rather than an area. As Official Distance is determined to/from that specific point, distance from a different point inside the same ZIP code will, of course, be different.

However, the DTOD database is enormous and may at times contain minor discrepancies. Most discrepancies are caught and fixed by the data vendor in their update and review cycle. Error reporting coming from the DTOD user community are extremely helpful.

To report a Distance ErrorContact the DTOD 24-Hour HelpDesk. In order for the report to be investigated, you will need to give the DTOD Origin, the DTOD Destination and your reasoning why there is an error.

DTOD works very closely with the data vendor to ensure that DTOD is the best it can be, and user feedback is very important to us.

26. Can't find ZIP or SPLC?

The DTOD data vendor receives updates from the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) and the National Motor Freight Transportation Agency (NMFTA) twice a year. The vendor reviews the changes and modifies DTOD data accordingly. DTOD is updated twice a year.

If a ZIP Code cannot be found: Make sure to look for JUST the ZIP Code. If not found, use the old ZIP Code for the target location.

If a SPLC cannot be found: Make sure to look for JUST the SPLC, without specifying City, State or County. If not found, look for the city-level partial SPLC (the first six digits). If the six-digit city-level SPLC is not found, look at the SPLCs in the same county (first four digits) and use one that matches at least five-digits of the target SPLC.

SPLC structure is a nested system where the first six-digits represent State-County-City and the last three digits, the “sub-code”, specify a specific point within the City. Any SPLC with a “000” Sub-Code “Contains” any SPLCs that share the first six-digits but have a different Sub-Code. Where possible, use the City-Level-SPLC for a SPLC that is not in DTOD.

(ie. Looking for hypothetical SPLC 231101005 does not return anything. Look for 231101 and you find “231101000 Elkton, MD, Cecil” as well as a couple more with different last three digits. The SPLC with “000” as the last three digits is the “City-Level-SPLC”. Use that one.)

DTOD is updated with additional SPLCs and ZIPs every six months. If you would like to ensure that a specific SPLC or ZIP is reviewed, contact the DTOD 24 Hour HelpDesk.

27. Can't find a Place?

DTOD looks up user input and returns any matching locations. However, the location database is ENORMOUS and DTOD only matches locations that START with the entered name. Other searching methods would simply take too long.

So what can you do?

Make sure the correct region is selected. Places in North America can’t be seen from other regions and places outside North America can’t be seen from North America.

If you added a state code, country code, or county name try looking for the location without them.

If you combined the place name with a ZIP or SPLC, try looking for the just the city name, or just the number.

Try a less specific search. DTOD will return matches for a minimum of two characters. Try entering just the first part of the name.

Try a different spelling or different name. If you spelled out the installation name (Air Force Base) try an abbreviation (AFB). Or vice versa. The same applies to prefixes and suffixes like “Port” or “Saint”. DTOD contains the most common synonyms but may not recognize the one you are using. Sometimes the “Common” name of the base is used and sometimes the “Official” name is used. Try different ones.

Try rearranging the order of the name. Sometimes an Installation will be listed Name then City and sometimes the other way around. The naming scheme used varies from installation to installation and is not consistent throughout DoD. In many cases, the same installation already exists in DTOD multiple times with different names, but not every name has been identified.

Contact the DTOD 24-Hour HelpDesk. Familiarity with how DTOD works helps us out a lot.

Even if you find your location on your own, you may have a different name for it that should be in DTOD. Let us know what name to add and either which existing location it is an alias for or information about where the place is.

28. The Route is Wrong?

The Route used to determine the Official Distance is shown on the Map & Directions page.

DTOD is not an Address to Address model and does not contain data for all "Street" level streets. This is by design, DOD has decided to use this particular model. When DTOD routes to or from a Location that is not on a road in the DTOD database it draws the shortest straight line between the Location and the closest road. This does not always match an actual road.

There are cases where DTOD decides to use roads that just should not be used. If the roads are impassable for significant portions of the year or if the quality/safety of the road is an issue, let us know.

Contact the DTOD 24-Hour HelpDeskWe will forward any information on to the data vendor for their investigation. They will make the final determination.

Corrections to the DTOD road database will be included in the next version of DTOD or emergency override. DTOD is updated annually (1 October).

There is a separate Help Item about Round Trip is Different, which is a different issue.

29. Round Trip is different?

When the Official Distance is different in the opposite direction, IT IS STILL THE OFFICIAL DISTANCE. The Origin and Destination cannot be switched around.

Minor differences are to be expected. Roads and entrance/exit ramps are different lengths in opposite directions. Small differences in long routes can add up to pretty significant numbers. And One-Way roads are an obvious cause.

But when DTOD uses very different routes with very different distances it raises questions.

In MANY cases there is nothing wrong! DTOD determines the Official Distance through a complex algorithm that weighs all possible routes and selects the best one. The factors DTOD uses to compare roads include distance, travel time, road quality, and ease of route (things like right-turns are easier for cars and left-turns are easier for trucks). But the main trade off is distance vs. time.

DTOD gives more weight to the quicker roads when determining Travel distance, making this issue more likely to show up. Normally, because the shorter route and the faster route are so close in favorability that DTOD picks one one-way and the other the other.

Sometimes it’s an Error, but it’s not a simple as “The route DTOD uses is longer or shorter than it should be.” What typically happens when there is an error is, DTOD considers a road segment or ramp to be longer/slower/in worse condition in one direction, which lowers the favorability of any route using that road segment, which results in DTOD using a completely different route which happens to have a significantly different distance.

Contact the DTOD 24-Hour HelpDeskWe can’t tell if it’s an error or not and we report all of these cases to the data vendor. They will figure out if there’s an error and fix it.

Corrections to the DTOD road database will be included in the next version of DTOD or emergency override. DTOD is updated annually (1 October).

Even so, the problem may not get corrected, if there is not actually an error.