The Internet of Things, or simply the IoT, is fast making a difference in various industries, and in 2018, expect IoT to change the trucking industry for the better.
Here are 3 ways the IoT will change the industry in 2018:
1. Better Truck Monitoring
As early as 2015, Saia LTL Freight Inc. had already installed sensors in each of their trucks for the purpose of tracking maintenance needs, fuel usage, and several other metrics related to performance. This decision paid off well for Saia as the program, according to VP Brian Balius, led to a 6% increase in fuel efficiency, which translates to some $15 million in savings for the company.
With Internet-enabled sensors now more readily accessible, more and more trucking companies will likely equip their vehicles with such devices so they can strictly monitor the performance and overall integrity of their trucks. Through information sent to these sensors, maintenance crews will know which trucks need servicing for brakes, tires, oil, and other critical systems. This real-time monitoring, in turn, will enable trucking companies to better maintain each vehicle in their fleet to make sure that every truck that goes out is roadworthy. This means less on-the-road breakdowns and malfunctions, and fewer accidents caused by faults that should have been picked up on.
2. Faster, Better Service
Apart from collecting and passing on the data on a truck’s performance, IoT-enabled devices can also obtain real-time data that can help drivers identify the best and safest routes to their destinations. They can also be alerted to emergencies such as road accidents and quickly be rerouted. Tracking and tracing goods will also become faster, more accurate, and more secure, with both driver and dispatcher having the same immediate access to the logistical information. As Forbes notes in its feature on the IoT, this innovation “creates visibility” on each individual stock of every shipment, which allows trucking companies a better understanding of its assets, notably perishable goods.
3. Safety of Drivers
According to recent data compiled by an agency monitoring accidents involving commercial trucks, driver fatigue causes about 30% of all road mishaps involving commercial vehicles. Through the aid of the IoT and government intervention, drivers will be better monitored through an Electronic Logging Device (ELD), which fleet companies and drivers are now mandated to install. According to Fleetmatics the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s decision to require ELDs has automated the process of recording a driver’s Hours of Service (HoS) and has replaced the need for paper logs. Automating this record-tracking system in turn allows commercial truck operators to better monitor their drivers’ HoS, thus preventing instances of fatigued drivers remaining behind the wheel. This innovative system also makes it near impossible for drivers to circumvent their HoS. Through taking exhausted drivers off the road, there is an increased likelihood that accidents involving commercial trucks will decrease significantly. It would also help if all commercial truck drivers are given the counter fatigue pointers which we have discussed here at Fleet Trailer Company. (Fleet Trailer, LLC.
Time for a Change
Indeed, the IoT looks set to improve the trucking industry in ways unimaginable a decade ago. Some though are still having second thoughts about incorporating the IoT into their fleet. Having a a bit of hesitation is normal, and actually expected, as the industry has never been on the forefront of pioneering change. But the age of IoT is upon us now, and 2018 is the perfect time to make full use of it.
Written exclusively for fleettrailer.com