GPS vehicle tracking system just launched by the Chrysler Group will likely be the company’s first step toward establishing a competitor for GM’s OnStar and Ford’s SYNC systems. The new system is a Mopar-branded Electronic Vehicle Tracking System.
Chryler’s new Electronic Vehicle Tracking System offers different levels of service. The basic plan is aimed primarily at protecting owners from vehicle theft. Using GPS fleet tracking technology from Guidepoint Systems, the Mopar device includes a GPS integrated stolen vehicle tracker that can provide real-time information on the vehicle’s location and includes a $1,000 “theft-protection” warranty from Chrysler. The good news is the basic level Electronic Vehicle Tracking Systems do not require a subscription fee. This is useful to customers who want to avoid the hassle of ongoing fees while still taking advantage of the GPS stolen vehicle tracking system capabilities.
Taxi cabs are crucial to a city’s transportation system. I realized this recently after trying to get a cab after a Charger’s game in San Diego and during a taxi cab strike in Atlanta. Having access to cabs 24/7 is something that we all take for granted. Taxis are vital people movers and cities cannot function properly without them.
Taxi cab fleets in major cities range from approximately 5,000 – 10,000 vehicles. For example, the city of Chicago has a fleet of about 6000 cabs. Chances are, fleets this large owe their flow and easy operation to GPS fleet tracking systems. That is because without them, too much is left to chance. Drivers and consumers are wandering about rather aimlessly hoping to hook up at the right place and the right time.
GPS tracking is a preferred method of taxi cab fleet management. Companies dispatching taxi cabs know that a tracking system will tell them where their fleet is exactly, so they have better control of their resources, and as an extension of that, better control of their operating costs and profit margin. GPS tracking systems are used to: record on-duty trips; to keep an electronic record of mileage and location, eliminating the need for manual trip sheets; and to better dispatch the closest available vehicle to trip requests.
Companies now have access to a wide range of tools to monitor employee performance and streamline operations. While these tools… Read more »
When Interwest Construction Inc. wanted to catch the thieves that had stolen one of their trucks before they stripped it, they activated the fleet vehicle’s GPS tracking system and the chase was on. FieldLogix, an industry leading GPS vehicle tracking device and green fleet management system, was successfully utilized to recover the missing fleet vehicle in just a few hours.
According to Kristal Wagner of Interwest Construction, Inc., “We had a truck stolen on Monday during the night. Tuesday morning, when the foreman was panicking & calling the sheriff, I used the the real-time GPS tracking device to pull up the vehicle’s exact location and gave the Sheriff the information. We recovered the truck within a couple of hours. Some small items that weren’t valuable were stolen from the truck, but the vehicle was not harmed at all!”
GPS fleet tracking systems are recommended to all drivers by the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) to prevent motor vehicle theft. According to NICB, a car is stolen every 26 seconds in America. Nearly half of these are never recovered, and are commonly scrapped for parts or smuggled to another country. NICB’s vehicle protection approach recommends four layers of security based on the risk factors pertaining to a specific vehicle. Vehicle Tracking Systems are one such layer, and are described by the NICB as “very effective” in helping police recover stolen vehicles. Vehicle GPS tracking systems are an important and integrated part of the “layered approach” to protecting fleet vehicles.
GPS vehicle tracking systems are a worthwhile investment for many fleets. Here’s a few reasons why fleets like using fleet GPS tracking systems:
1. Fleet tracking systems reduce business operating costs and increase fleet safety by targeting poor drivers that speed excessively, resulting in wasted fuel, excessive engine wear, drive up insurance rates and cause accidents.
2. Many fleet managers like using the system’s automatic mileage reminder to reduce downtime and enhances vehicle resale values by encouraging scheduled, preventative maintenance. Vehicle tracking systems can remind you when it’s time to rotate tires, change oil or perform other scheduled maintenance. Conversely, fleet management systems also can tell you if a vehicle is not in need of scheduled service which helps keep maintenance costs under control.
Vehicle tracking systems should be considered if your company has more than two vehicles. If your company has more than two vehicles, then you have a fleet. The goal of fleet management is to extract maximum value and minimize the cost of maintaining of vehicles. Fleet management is a complex and comprehensive challenge. It involves much more than just knowing where drivers and vehicles are located or routinely checking oil levels in your fleet vehicles. Fleet management includes vehicle procurement, vehicle maintenance, vehicle disposal, vehicle tracking and the management of logistical, operational, functional, regulatory and compliance requirements.
With the assistance of modern technology such as fleet GPS devices or vehicle tracking systems, fleet management has now become much easier and cost effective. Fleet management is an important and often overlooked part of many private organizations. Due to the economy, private fleet operators today are under more pressure than ever to control expenses. Optimizing your fleet’s operations can improve your company’s productivity, reduce costs and have a positive impact on the bottom line.
GPS fleet tracking systems are successfully being utilized in the largest cities in America for good reasons. According to Helen Rane Carbone, Chief Programmer and Analyst for the Chicago’s Department of Transportation “Before we implemented GPS, our fleet managers and dispatchers had virtually no real-time information on the whereabouts or activity of our fleet vehicles. We relied on very basic communication using two-way radios and hand-written reports. This was never able to provide the type and depth of information we needed for real performance monitoring, improvement, and accountability, which is expected of all city departments.”
According to Carbone, “before implementing a vehicle tracking system, simply keeping track of mobile resources from a dispatcher’s perspective – vehicle and driver scheduling, routing, call response, location in the case of emergencies – was a very difficult daily task. Truly measuring fleet and mobile employees’ productivity was practically impossible.”
Cities like Chicago are also using GPS fleet management systems to enhance their efforts to go green. Fleet managers are using real-time vehicle location data to optimize routes and reduce excessive idling in an effort to reduce gas consumption, CO2 pollution and other hazardous greenhouse gas emissions. According to Ms. Carbone, telematics plays a big part in many of Chicago’s environmental initiatives in becoming a true green fleet. “Fleet GPS management systems help with everything from the number and type of vehicles we’re using for a particular task, how they’re being used, and the amount of CO2 emissions they’re producing. Everyone is looking to big cities like Chicago to lead the way in this, and remote fleet management has gone from being a valuable tool to an absolute necessity.”
One of the best things about real time fleet tracking is that it enables fleet managers to work hand in hand with their drivers and other mobile employees, even when they are thousands of miles apart. Every day there so many unforeseen circumstances arise, resulting in the need for last minute changes. So having a real time two-way communications system between fleet manager and commercial vehicle drivers is critical to a running an efficient fleet. Taking into account things like traffic jams, accidents, unpredictable weather conditions, delivery instructions, last minute pick-ups, and employee issues is an important part for a successful person managing fleet vehicles and drivers. Commercial vehicle tracking facilitates instant and accurate responses to ensure that the best solution can be deployed with the least amount of time or costs.
An average day someone overseeing a mobile workforce can involve matching busy schedules with the nearest available resources or service personnel to a new or changed location. Without a fleet management system, a telephone can be used to stay abreast of the constant changes, and to communicate with mobile employees. But a vehicle tracking device is by far superior to using a telephone to communicate – even if you have a smartphone with SMS text messaging, email and GPS navigation. The bottom line is a telephone no matter how smart it is, just doesn’t compare to a vehicle tracking solution.