| March 2023 |.
GPS tracking systems for municipalities allow dispatch to route municipal vehicles around major congestion to perform a requested intervention or task. A GPS fleet management system also provides greater insight into different vehicles and driver behavior. Thus, municipal fleet managers not only know where vehicles are at any given time, but also whether their drivers are safe, on schedule and driving competently. Proper analysis of the available data, and proper guidance toward more responsible driving behavior leads to safer and more efficient fleets.
GPS tracking technology can offer cities and towns a simple way to manage their workers more effectively. With data from these systems, local governments can ensure that workers are making the stops they need to make. Tracking data can also be used to confirm that workers are moving efficiently from stop to stop and not wasting time doing nothing. In addition to tracking vehicle use during business hours, GPS data loggers can also help prevent unauthorized use of public vehicles outside business hours.
In addition, GPS can help improve efficiency by preventing municipal staff from using fleet vehicles for non-work-related tasks at work. For example, if you use geofencing, you can define a service area for fleet vehicles and receive an alert if a vehicle moves outside this area. This allows you to quickly contact and verify why the driver has left the assigned municipal service area.
Responsibility for maintaining public infrastructure is important. When there are emergency calls to handle situations such as road maintenance, you need to have a vehicle on scene quickly to respond. To save both time and resources, this would (ideally) mean sending the closest available vehicle to the service area.
When using conventional, non-GPS tracking methods, this task would often require contacting several drivers to find out their location and discover who is closer. A GPS fleet tracking solution for maintenance vehicles now makes this possible without the hassle and time spent in discussions between responders about who is closer.
For other fleet vehicles performing non-emergency services, such as snow removal, sanitation and street sweeping, a fleet management system can be super useful to view information such as:
1) Which streets were serviced: view each vehicle's route history for a selected period
2) Who served each specific area: via driver identification, you can link a driver to a particular vehicle
3) When does a vehicle need to be inspected/maintained: automatic notifications and vehicle inspection reports via smartphone ensure your service vehicles are fully operational when you need them
Maintaining mileage and maintenance records of fleet vehicles and equipment is quite a challenge for municipal fleet managers. On a limited budget, they may be responsible for a fleet of hundreds of vehicles that must endure the rigors of daily use by various users.
This is where GPS fleet management software simplifies the process and makes it more manageable. GPS fleet tracking for municipalities enables:
- To know the total mileage of each vehicle
- View/analyze key performance statistics
- View/compare operational hours
Some GPS devices have the ability to communicate with a vehicle's on-board diagnostic system to provide remote diagnostics. With this information, it is much easier to determine which vehicles are most in need of preventive maintenance.
Not only does this help reduce costs by enabling smaller, cheaper repairs, it also helps prevent breakdowns on the road that disrupt operations (and traffic). By determining which vehicles need maintenance first, you can prevent vehicle breakdowns that would otherwise lead to high repair costs and vehicle downtime.
A lost or stolen commercial vehicle can take a big bite out of a local government's budget. Unfortunately, it is all too common for municipal vehicles to be lost or stolen. Without GPS, recovering a stolen vehicle is a matter of luck.
GPS allows you to transmit last known GPS coordinates of a lost or stolen vehicle to your police colleagues, significantly increasing the likelihood of recovering the vehicle intact so that you do not have to reinvest to replace it.
The various applications for GPS tracking help your organization--and taxpayers--save money in both the short and long term:
- Monitor and address risky driving behavior that causes unnecessary wear and tear on vehicles and increases the risk of fines, accidents and possible lawsuits.
- Reduce wasteful assignments or route overlap.
- Reduce the need for costly repairs through regular fleet maintenance.
- Decreasing gas consumption with optimized routes.
Fuel costs are a significant expense for local governments with large fleets. A GPS tracking system can help curb speeding and unnecessary idling that lead to fuel waste. This seemingly innocuous driving behavior can make a big difference in fuel costs; in fact, driving even just a few miles above a posted speed limit can have a marked impact on fuel consumption. In addition, GPS tracking data can help cities develop more efficient snow removal and waste management routes to save even more fuel.
Using fuel more wisely not only saves these local governments money; it also reduces the carbon footprint of a municipal fleet. Since a large portion of greenhouse gas emissions come from vehicles, reducing inefficiencies such as idling and poorly planned routes can make a big difference in a fleet's emissions.
Municipal vehicle fleets occasionally become involved in lawsuits; GPS tracking data can help refute false claims about these vehicles. With information from GPS tracking software, the exact location and speed of a vehicle at any given time can be ascertained, providing valuable evidence during court cases.
It is clear that cities and other local governments are making good use of GPS vehicle tracking for their municipal fleets. With the increasing integration of driver and vehicle data, the future looks bright for tracking devices: these real-time tracking systems will be able to provide even more benefits to municipalities in the future. The real value of a GPS tracking system lies in how data is used, and local governments are making great use of this information.
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