Telematics | Types Of Vehicle Tracking Systems

Types Of Vehicle Tracking Systems

This page runs through the different types of vehicle tracking hardware that is available, how they can be useful, and what to look out for when you are choosing a vehicle tracking system.

All vehicle trackers transmit a GPS location signal

The simplest vehicle tracking devices are wired to the vehicle battery and only send a GPS signal. They are easily self-installed.

Some insurance companies give their customers GPS transmitters that they stick on their car windscreen. This type can recharge their batteries using solar power. The disadvantage is that they are a bit too easy to remove, so they definitely won’t help you find a stolen vehicle.

When telematics software is connected to one of these GPS devices, it shows where the vehicle is. As the data accumulates during the day, the software can list out where the car, van or HGV was at any given time, how fast it travelled, and whether this was within the speed limit.

Many vehicle tracking devices have accelerometers

Devices with accelerometers as well as GPS can give information on how the driver handles the vehicle. These need to be fitted by a mechanic as they have several wires which must be connected correctly.

Telematics systems which use this type of device are sometimes called ‘in-vehicle monitoring systems’ (IVMS) because they monitor the driver. The vehicle tracking software stores detailed records of how carefully drivers handle their vans or lorries and how productive they are each day.

What data do GPS accelerometers transmit?

When and where the driver has rapidly accelerated When and where the driver has braked harshly
When and where the driver took corners too fast When and where the engine is left idling when the vehicle is stopped
More accurate information on the vehicle speed than simple GPS trackers
Definite evidence if divers break the speed limit

Telematics can give you a bird’s eye view of your fleet at all times, making it quick and easy to manage all your drivers. You can deal with breakdowns or accidents immediately and even check the driver dashcam footage or speeding incidents from your mobile phone.

As a free comparison site, iCompario can help you find the right system for the right price.

Cameras and other devices can be added for special types of vehicle tracking

Cameras can face forwards and transmit film of the driver’s view. These days it’s not just companies but also some private individuals who install these as backup, in case they need to make insurance claims.

Cameras can also be fitted around the vehicle to improve the driver’s visibility when reversing or parking, and they can record the view behind the vehicle so there is a record if necessary.

Just in workplaces alone, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) reports that there are more than 1,250 accidents and injuries each year in Britain caused by vehicles reversing. More than ten workers a year are killed by colleagues reversing into them.

If this isn’t enough of a case for installing vehicle cameras, the statistics for pedestrians and cyclists on the roads are even more horrendous. In London alone, a staggering 26,000 people are injured each year, reports Transport for London, and two-thirds of these accidents are caused by HGVs. Cameras are vital to get rid of driver blind spots in lorries.

In Greater London vehicle cameras have become compulsory for HGVs under a new law called the Direct Vision Standard.

Power take-off sensors can report whether a switch is positioned to ‘on’ or ‘off’. This could be anything from a vehicle-mounted crane, the bin lift in a bin wagon, special vehicle doors, working parts on an agricultural vehicle or more – their uses are almost endless.

Bin men loading a tracked lorry with rubbish

CAN devices pull data from the vehicle diagnostics system. This means they can transmit anything from the vehicle’s own diagnostics system about the condition of the engine, brakes and anything else a mechanic would check via a vehicle’s CAN bus.

A vehicle tracking device being fitted under a bonnet

Sensors can be wired to other parts of moving assets to tell when doors are opened, when a tail lift is activated, or even the temperature inside a trailer. The variety of telematics devices at the top end of this technology is huge and constantly evolving.

Telematics can give you a bird’s eye view of your fleet at all times, making it quick and easy to manage all your drivers. You can deal with breakdowns or accidents immediately and even check the driver dashcam footage or speeding incidents from your mobile phone.

As a free comparison site, iCompario can help you find the right system for the right price.

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