Everyday school buses are responsible for the transportation of 25 million American children. Driving more than four billion miles each year around the nation. With an increasing number of children riding the bus each year, a fleet telematics system is must. Telematic devices are the latest innovation in assisting school bus fleets to safer driving and student safety. It allows school districts the ability to control costs and keep school bus fleets accountable.
With pressure to improve safety and efficiency, telematics is the future. It is expected that by 2025, that 98% of school buses will include telematic devices. Telematics allows transportation directors to increase safety, reduce costs, and meet greener goals.
In 2018 in Whitter, a student with autism died after being left inside a school bus in 96-degree heat for more than eight hours. The driver failed to follow required the mandatory sweep after completing the route.
Although stories such as this are not common, they are still reoccurring each year across the nation. 17,000 students annually end up in the hospital due to the result of buses. Not all accidents end in fatality, but they create large amounts of stress for everyone involved. While drivers are required to follow protocols such as inspecting seats before and after shifts, adhering to speed limits, and ensuring students are seated correctly with seat belts on they are still prone as humans to make mistakes.
Thankfully telematics already exists to guarantee all driver requirements are followed and completed correctly every time. Fleet tracking systems provide insight and fleet managers the ability to become aware of unsafe behaviors. A safe driving program gives safe drivers incentives or drivers who improve the most to assist managers in motivating their drivers in a realistic way.
Some other ways telematics can improve student safety include:
- Real-time school bus GPS tracking
- Keep parents informed on bus location and arrival times
- Ensure all drivers follow speed limits, avoid hard braking & acceleration, and stay on approved bus routes
- Determine safe drop-off and pick locations for students
- React to traffic situations and weather situations
Due to the effects of Covid-19, many school districts across the nation are facing tighter budget cuts than ever. Making it important for fleet managers to cut costs wherever possible. According to a transportation insurance expert, the use of telematic devices can reduce loss costs caused by risky driving behaviors by 20% to 25% through reduced deductibles. The use of correct telematics in fleets is the solution as they can increase efficiency and reduce operative costs in numerous ways:
- Cut idling time, speeding, and inefficient routes will reduce fuel consumption saving fleet manager money
- Scheduled maintenance keeps buses safe, and can help avoid expensive repairs, downtime, and breakdowns
- Improved bus routes and properly trained drivers, decreases wear and tear on buses
- Help to bring lower insurance premiums due to an overall fleet safety program
Installing telematics in bus fleets allows fleet managers to lower fuel costs, reduce vehicle idle time, improve vehicle utilization, and lower insurance costs. Telematics in the long run will ultimately save schools districts thousands of dollars and increase safety among students.
Meet Regulatory Requirements
Telematics can easily increase safety and efficiency, but they can also help the environmental challenges fleet managers face. With the growing amount of regulations to reduce CO2 emissions, telematics can ensure fleet managers are able to meet greener goals. Some ways telematics can help make sure green goals are meet include:
- Ability to monitor emission systems and use dashboard lights to alert the driver when there are problems
- Optimize routing and track bus usage data such as idling, speeding and fuel usage
- Improve air quality by helping to reduce the concentrated diesel exhaust emissions near schools
- Ability to report “greener fleet” metrics to administration and parents, making your school bus fleet more likely to be vendor of choice
Telematics is the Future for School Bus Fleet Management
Telematics enables bus fleet managers to identify less congested routes and in turn slash both their carbon footprint and fuel spending. Through education and training fleet drivers can easily increase safety for students making it less likely for human error. Make sure when looking into a telematic system for your bus fleet that it meets your needs and is easily accessible.
OnTrak Solutions provides vehicle technologies that protect your business, improves drive safety, & reduces insurer risk. Visit us at https://www.OnTrak-Solutions.com/ or call us at (732)-276-5353 to learn how your business can benefit from Telematics.