July 13, 2021

The Importance of Truck Telematics in the Logistics Business

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New and upcoming Logistics Businesses are now turning to more modern solutions to their not very new problems - like cargo theft, bad driver road behavior, unsuspecting vehicle breakdowns. One of the most common solutions would be the use of telematics

What Is Telematics?

In the simplest sense, telematics is the result of combining two disciplines of technology

- telecommunications and

- informatics

- vehicular technology

- electrical engineering

- vehicular technologies

- computer science

The telematics we know of today is primarily used to refer to telematic solutions which are used in the logistics industry. Telematic devices are installed in commercial fleet vehicles. These devices then collect various types of raw data. These telematic devices primarily capture data from the vehicle and this data is then sent to the management software companies like Fleetx, where this data is then processed further into a more readable format.

Such OBD or On-Board Devices collect raw data for functions like -

Location monitoring

On-board devices are primarily used for live tracking of the shipments. This proves to be a very useful and valuable function considering the unorganized nature of Indian railways. Apart from the dangerous roads, there are numerous other unfortunate risks that indian truck drivers have to tackle while on the road. Such devices make it easier and remotely safer for the entire fleet if there is active remote tracking.

Engine monitoring

Unforeseen vehicle breakdowns are never a favourable turn of events. Indian highways and roadways are very unpredictable and it is always advisable to have remote help for all your fleet troubles while in transit. The risk factor is also high because usually the vehicles are transporting high-value goods. Telematic devices capture the engine data and can even predict engine breakdown well in advance. This will not only make the driver’s job easy but will also ensure a timely delivery which will only further help great client relations.

Velocity monitoring

Oftentimes we witness massive accidents on the highways involving big trucks. For a big vehicle to get into an accident, the momentum of the vehicle plays a massive role in defining the extent of damage caused in the unfortunate accident. Indian truck drivers tend to drive fast on empty roads, leading to big accidents. It should be noted that it is not always the fault of the truck driver, and it could be a result of other vehicles driving rashly on the road. Yet, it is always a good idea to be cautious and to avoid accidents. On-board devices can actively track the velocity of the vehicle and take necessary action.

Such cautious behaviour can help avoid unnecessary mishaps which can lead to costly insurance feuds and cleanup drives for the roads. Usually the cleanups are only required in case the cargo’s shipment has been compromised and is a mess.

Driver behavior analytics

The telematics device can also help us access data on how the driver is driving. Some of these verticals include - hard acceleration and deceleration, quick lane changes, exhaust emissions, etc. Such empirical data when processed correctly can help in analysing the risk and taking necessary precautions to avoid on-transit mishaps.

What Are Truck Telematics? How is it Useful?

Telematic devices can be used in any type of vehicle and for numerous purposes. However, the ones used in the trucking industry are slightly different from those used by different types of fleets and independent users. The devices themselves are physically different and designed differently to better fit the larger vehicles. In terms of the usage, the trucking telematic devices are more handy when seeking out data on fuel usage, road taxes, service hours and machine health status, among other purposes. Trucking telematics are better equipped to handle rough roads, bouncing, are equipped with longer batteries and are primarily more heavy-duty than regular telematic devices.

Trucking telematic systems have proved to be highly useful to fleet owners and managers. These systems play a crucial role in -

  • Transportation Management Systems
  • Vehicle Maintenance

What is a Transport Management System?

TMS is a data collection system. The collected data is then processed and analyzed by the fleet management system which is then converted into real time strategies and operations plans for the fleet to then function on. TMS helps fleet owners better manage their accounting, orders, dispatching, billing and customer service. Basically, it helps in ensuring a seamless operating system for the fleet.

Vehicle Maintenance

Heavy duty telematic devices are a good way of capturing data on the vehicle’s technical functioning. Recorded data like this is helpful in keeping up with the servicing of the vehicle, which can prove to be beneficial while reselling the vehicle. Furthermore, based on this data, fleet owners can even avoid unfortunate instances like the vehicle breaking down. Overall, such attention to detail in caring for the vehicle can even prolong the life of the vehicle.

What Next?

With the impressive evolution of technology and modern solutions, it has now become possible for all logistics businesses - big or small - to function with fluidity and precision in cost effective ways.

Some speculate that ‘contextual utilization’ is soon going to be the new trend to take over. It basically means that the care and services of each vehicle can be customized now because of the recorded data from trucking telematics. Instead of treating all machines the same way and getting them serviced in the same timely fashion, the vehicles are serviced based on their needs.

Using newer technology and moving to unfamiliar working channels can be a challenge. But with the right team, it can also be the best decision you make as a business owner. Management assistant tech solutions, like those offered by Fleetx, just might be the answer to your business problems.

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