Local fleet management and vehicle- tracking solutions provider Africa Tracking Solutions (ATS) in January introduced a fingerprint biometrics unit for driver identification and authorisation.
ATS operations director Regan Mackie explains that the biometrics unit ensures that the vehicle can only operate using the driver’s ‘live’ fingerprint and cargo doors can only be unlocked within a geofence zone using a driver’s ‘live’ fingerprint, which significantly reduces the risk of high-value loads being stolen or hijacked.
The upward spiral of fleet running costs resulted in ATS receiving an unprecedented number of requests for innovative solutions and products over the last two years and this has prompted the company to introduce several new offerings.
In December, ATS integrated the software tracking programme Speed Gauge into its management platform, which enables the company’s clients to monitor the speed of all their vehicles on South African roads.
“We added a new fuel probe system in November to measure fuel use, which can be customised to monitor individual, daily or monthly trips. The system also immediately sends alerts to the vehicle’s owner by email and/or SMS when fuel is being stolen,” says Mackie.
Further, ATS added a global positioning system fuel-cap notification alert to its tracking system in October, which electronically alerts operators when the fuel cap is opened.
“In August, we added the Garmin navigational device, which has integrated dispatch functions into our offering. The dispatch functions can also be sent electronically to the Garmin device, providing managers – either the day before or during trips – with the routes that the driver is to take,” notes Mackie.
In July, the company launched a smartphone application, currently available on Android and BlackBerry, to manage the location of a company’s workforce.
ATS says an Apple iPhone version of the application will be available later this year, but a date for its launch has not yet been set.
Meanwhile, Mackie notes that ATS services are run on an ISO 9001:2008 Business and Quality Management Systems-certified platform.
“ATS enables managers to track fleets using our mobile viewer application, and our clients can share specific vehicle tracking with their customers, thereby enabling logistics companies’ clients to view their cargo in transit,” he highlights.
Additionally, Mackie says ATS’s engine protection system protects vehicles from engine destruction caused by operational hazards such overheating.
“Our solutions can reduce a company’s fuel spend on diesel trucks, buses and yellow metal by at least 5%,” he asserts, adding that ATS’s reports are customisable and have an electronic customer-ticketing system whereby customers can log in and register service or technical queries.
“Our ability to cost-effectively manage companies’ route planning, speed monitoring and engine protection, as well as educate their fleet managers and controllers on how to most effectively manage their fleets using our ATS solutions, greatly assists them in increasing their ability to perform more efficiently,” Mackie concludes.