Geotab Trucking Industry Solution

 Case Study: Trucking Industry Solution

  • Industry: Local and Long Haul Transport
  • Vehicles/Assets: 50 plus individual contractors
  • Sites: South Africa

The Trucking and Transport Industry is a highly competitive industry and cost management is an essential part of the business, including safety on the road, and South African roads is deemed some of the most dangerous in the world, whilst drivers and operators also face other challenges such as social unrest that could at times lead to damage to property of operators.

Client Requirements:

The brief received from customer was an extensive set of requirements as fleet structure consisted of both own and subcontracted fleet, customer wanted the following:

  • Own and contractors fleet had to be installed with GEOTAB system, some of these vehicles had OBD port functionalities and others would require three wire harness configurations (Ignition and Power).
  • Customer wanted visibility at all times of where vehicles were and how they were operated on the road, with reports on any and all driver behaviour that was outside of the green band of approved driver behavior by customer.
  • Possibility to in real-time to route drivers to different customer collection and delivery points
  • Possibility to route driver according to a set routing system for deliveries and collections as packing into vehicle was set at very specific delivery routine.
  • Ability to review planned routes and actual routes taken by driver as well as any deviations from these routes.
  • Ability to record time of arrival and time spent at each customer point, especially since there were very specific Service Level Agreements (SLA’s) in place with customers and at times customer felt that these SLA’s were not adhered to and extensive times were spent at different sites with delays in getting loads off-loaded and unloaded.
  • Ability to be alerted if it is suspected that drivers are picking up passengers.
  • Ability to integrate with fuel card system.
  • Recording of high risk zones that had to be communicated to it’s drivers, these included hijackings, poor road conditions, regular social unrest sites, high crime rates (stolen wheels, theft from trucks etc)
  • Alerts to any stops outside of approved stops .
  • Method for driver to alert head-office in case of any assistance required, such as break-downs and/or accidents.
  • Some of the customers vehicles carried high risk items, such as liquor and therefore had a different risk profile associated with these vehicles.
  • Contractors had specific requirements as well that included some method to alert to theft from external toolboxes on truck.
  • Some drivers had the habit of not checking connectivity of Suzie cables prior to leaving different yards, resulting in increased risk of accidents whilst on the road.
  • Tracking to be installed on trailers as well in order to be able to independently track the horse and trailer.
  • Requirement to be tracked across borders as far as Democratic Republic of Congo.
  • Requirement to be alerted to any of it’s vehicles that were at border posts.
  • Some of the customer’s vehicles travelled at different times at night, increasing the risk of drivers falling asleep, especially on long-haul routes.
  • Wanted drivers to drive responsibly and therefore voluntarily wanted to implement an “Hours of Service: structure in the company.
  • Wanted some of its vehicles to be configured with load and offload sensors.
  • Method to record vehicle condition prior to any trip and recording of any issues that may require attentions, including audit trail that issues reported were addressed.
  • Some vehicles transports cold-chain goods and therefore temperature monitoring had to be part of solution.

Geotab Solution:

  • Core GEOTAB GO7 device via OBDII installations on a variety of vehicles, including the ability to read a range of information from vehicle via OBDII port, including fuel levels and usage, RPM, oil levels and temperatures, gear position, hours of usage.
  • Core GEOTAB GO7 device Three wire installations on a variety of vehicles that did not have OBDII ports.
  • Suzie cable connected/disconnected switches.
  • “Stealth” tracking solution on trailers with integration into the GEOTAB software, using the “REMORA” system that has a battery life of 5 years and requires no charging from any point, hence if trailer is disconnected then could still be tracked.
  • “Stealth” tracking solution with high value cargo.
  • GO-Talk text to speech device on all vehicles to communicate to drivers via voice commands if transgression took place or relevant zone information, combined with active tracking ability of GEOTAB.
  • Driver assist buttons in all vehicles, configured in such a fashion to eliminate any possible false activation’s, (Note: The Driver assist button will also be configured to act as fatigue monitoring device that will see driver having to activate by pressing at irregular intervals once GEOTAB completes final testing).
  • Driver and passenger doors were fitted with door sensors to alert on possible passenger activity.
  • Cargo doors were fitted with door sensors to record any opening of cargo doors.
  • Cold-chain vehicles were fitted with temperature sensors that were integrated into the GEOTAB software solution, in order to have audit trail and live monitoring and alerts of any out of band temperature movements, these were set up at various points inside cargo hold for accuracy purposes.
  • External toolbox sensors were fitted to alert driver of any tampering on toolboxes.
  • Some vehicles were fitted with “Loadtech” technology to monitor loading and offloading, including the ability to monitor over and under loading, tus productivity and profitability could be increased.
  • Zone creation of all customer points that GEOTAB imported based on customer data, thus customer could identify and report on all stops inside and outside of customer zones, time of arrival at these points, time spent at these points, which all could be used to monitor and manage SLA’s, including the ability to indicate to customer where customer vehicles were delayed.
  • In terms of above zoning GEOTAB also created micro zones to show exactly where customer vehicles were in the yard, from the point of arrival, loading, tarpaulin fixing area and finally departure point, in order to have detailed data to be used to manage the different SLA’s, this included zones at customer premises to record time of arrival and leaving, both at weighbridge and exit/entry gates (Note: GEOTAB GPS accuracy is at sub 3m)
  • GARMIN Integration to allow for the dispatch of drivers via GARMIN to different customer points.
  • Routing solution that could route drivers according to different customer points in sequence as required by customer, as well as ability for customer to route drivers on the fly via the real-time live tracking solution of GEOTAB.
  • Driver safety management that monitored speed (both the customer maximum speed by vehicle classification as well as the posted speed of the actual roads travelled on), harsh cornering, braking and acceleration, including over revving indicators (all of these safety and efficiency impacting).
  • Zones were also created where poor conditions of roads were reported, hijacking zones and other high risk areas, this communicated to driver on entering such zones via the Go-Talk device.
  • All vehicles were connected via the GEOTAB Vodacom M2M platform that allowed for even a greater level of connectivity than standard SIM Cards and allows for cross border monitoring effectively and efficiently, a few vehicles were also fitted with Iridium connectivity as a backup should vehicle go out of coverage. (Note: these non-coverage points across Africa is becoming less of a challenge)
  • GEOTAB Driver Vehicle Inspection was activated and prior to every trip driver recorded the condition and any issues that required attention, which service and maintenance manager could act on and audit trial is part of solution.
  • Service and Maintenance Schedules were set up on GEOTAB system, including the ability to incorporate all engine fault codes recorded.
  • Border alerts were set up to alert company if any of it’s vehicles approached any border post area.
  • GEOTAB also activated its SANRAL module for customer to enable customer a reconciliation method against billed invoices from SANRAL.
  • GEOTAB installed its Fuel Protector system together with the Diesel Guard system to counter diesel and fuel theft within fleet.
  • Hours of Service modules are to be tested with the fleet.
  • VESA approved response and recovery was activated for fleet, this includes ground and air recovery services.


  • Due to extensive Africa footprint customer also had comfort that GEOTAB could service any issues in various countries, the failure rate however of GEOTAB devices are very low (below 1% on core devices)
  • Customer currently looking at incorporating the managed monitoring solution of GEOTAB into its fleet, this is a service that monitors the fleet 24/7/365 in terms of driver behaviour and engine and vehicle faults as recorded by GEOTAB system, especially since a large portion of fleet is based on CUMMINS engines, which recently signed agreement for live service diagnostics monitoring that will be rolled out globally.
  • GEOTAB currently testing wheel theft alarm system for rollout into trucking community, this to combat the constant theft of wheels at various points across the country.
  • The GEOTAB system can identify jamming occurrences within fleet by criminals, and specific solutions are available to combat this.