Route planning or identifying uneconomical drivers are some of the benefits business owners immediately think of when telematics and fuel savings are mentioned.
Yet, there are some other ways in which telematics can be used to save fuel that new technological advancements are improving and making possible.
As fuel prices increase internationally, fuel siphoning is posing a major challenge across the world. The managing director of Legratron Electronics, Itumeleng Matshego, says: “South Africa is also facing major challenges regarding fuel theft. While fuel siphoning is not a new phenomenon and attempts at stopping this have already been made, it is only in recent years that technology has advanced enough to reduce the loss on a significant scale.
“Sensors are connected to a GPS unit which measure the fuel consumed per trip completed by a truck. It can also issue an alert when the fuel is sinking faster than what it should. With estimations that US$133 billion of fuel is stolen every year, it is fool-hardy to hope your business is not affected by this,” says Matshego.
Filling in the gaps
Telematics can be used to provide accurate estimates of how long trips should take and when clients can expect drivers to arrive. “If a driver is consistently arriving late to clients, is it because of elements outside of your driver’s control or because they take longer routes or unplanned detours that ultimately affect your bottom line? The only way to answer this question is by using telematics to track the drivers and use the information gained to take appropriate action.
“The threat of being tracked and clearly articulating the consequences of unauthorised use, should in itself be a deterrent to most drivers. There is also the benefit of improving the service you provide clients by reducing the number of late deliveries,” says Matshego.
The Transport Telematics and Vehicle Security Conference is taking place this week at Emperors Palace.