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Optimizing Fleet Operations Through GPS Tracking

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Optimizing Fleet Operations Through GPS Tracking

Alvin Toh
April 29, 2007

Global Positioning Systems (GPS) was originally developed by the US Armed Forces to help with naval and overland navigation. GPS uses a constellation of satellites to beam down encoded time signatures to receivers on the surface. By tracking the delay between when the time code says the signal was sent and when it actually arrived, GPS uses Einstein's theory of relativity and four signals (three if altitude is known) to provide accurate tracking down to about two meters. GPS technology has been moving into the commercial sphere from the military since the 1990s.

GPS fleet tracking systems are used in public transportation, most notably school buses in Kansas City and New York City. These systems allow school districts to know exactly where each bus is, thus improving the safety of their passengers. On flex routes, GPS gives drivers some leeway in adjusting their course to avoid traffic congestion. The secondary benefit is that it allows the school districts in question to better assess idle times, better routing algorithms and fuel efficiency. School officials and parents have a peace of mind knowing that the school buses are monitored constantly.

In April 2007, a private taxi company launched a fleet of 150 GPS-enabled metered taxis (or Meru taxis) in Mumbai, India. Customers will be able to call for a taxi at to pick up at a preferred location and book in advance on the phone or internet. If a customer accidentally left any personal item in a taxi, this GPS technology can track to the specific taxi quickly and easily. All collected Meru taxi fares are transmitted back to the control centre and monitored to ensure that customers are charged appropriately. The company plans to increase the fleet to 1,000 taxis by year end.

In the commercial sector, GPS is used for tracking delivery trucks and trucks used by contractors going to job sites. This allows real time monitoring of what trucks are en route and better tracking of actual mileage used (versus what's billed for). This also increases fleet wide fuel economy, and allows employers to check the actual hours driven by drivers in a day for mileage bonuses and "drive time" pay. H.A. Sun Heating and Cooling Inc. of Bloomfield, Mich. is an example of a company that installed GPS fleet tracking system in every of its truck. The company is able to access real time information that leads to savings in manpower costs (from people claiming they were on a shift for 8 hours, when the GPS showed that they'd only driven for seven and a half), reduced fuel costs and increased productivity and efficient truck routing. For this company, the GPS paid for itself in 30 days.

GPS fleet tracking system has been proven to increase efficiency and productivity in all types of businesses that own fleet of vehicles. In addition to cost and time savings, customer satisfaction is significantly improved through better responsiveness.

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GPS fleet tracking can improve many aspects of a business processes. It is the ultimate business solution to keep track of your fleets, drivers, customers and cargo. Check out our daily updated resources on GPS vehicle tracking systems at http://www.gpstrackingsys.com/art-optimize



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