Vehicle Tracking

GPS Vehicle Tracking Basics
A GPS Vehicle Tracking system supplies companies with a wealth of vital information to ensure safe, secure and faster on- time delivery services by reducing problems commonly associated with transporting goods. From running small scale fleet to operating international business operations, a system of commercial vehicle tracking is now considered essential technology for navigating 21st century transportation challenges. Known originally as the Navstar Global Positioning System. 

The GPS (Global Positioning System) was first conceived at the Pentagon in 1973 in response to the demand for an error-proof satellite system. In 1978 the first operational GPS satellite was launched and by the mid-1990s the system was fully operational with 24 orbiting satellites continuously transmitting radio signals.

A GPS receiver is installed in a vehicle and a system set up to receive the information at the company's 'back office', distribution centre or warehouse in order to continuously track the exact location of each vehicle along their delivery route. To determine the exact position of each vehicle, the GPS receiver must be able to lock on to three satellite signals. The receiver will be able to calculate latitude, longitude, and altitude by measuring the difference between the time the signal was sent and the time it was received from all three satellites.

Live vehicle tracking and managing the GPS data is a two-part system which is customised to the specific needs of each individual business operation.

A company with a small fleet may only require a basic vehicle tracking device. This type of fleet tracking system shows location, route, stops, and speed of vehicle. Doubling up as a 'mobile worker solution' allows independent contractors, company executives and the general workforce to use the basic system as a way of keeping guaranteed accurate travel records of mileage and time. A large scale organisation operating a sizeable fleet or who require more detailed information, may be advised to install a real-time GPS vehicle tracking system. Designed for a time critical service to be applied to many vehicles at once, digital and satellite maps with location updates are provided every few minutes, with automatic email reports and a record of vehicle maintenance.

Designed for large fleet, an advanced real-time system, requiring a laptop computer or a PDA, can include additional features such as wireless communication, two-way text messaging, and automatic downloads. The GPS receiver can record information for over two months, track idle time via an ignition on/ off sensor and document actual stop locations.

Additional 'long haul' on-board automated DOT (Department of Transportation) reporting on engine diagnostics is also available.

There are systems that will continue to track a vehicle on demand, without waiting for historical data when it enters a non-reception area. This would be vital for emergency services, local authorities, police and security or a company that cannot afford to be without coverage due to signal loss. 

With a GPS vehicle tracking system, vehicle arrival times are predicted more accurately, unauthorised usage can be reduced and/or eliminated, and notification sent when a driver speeds or departs from the designated route. Additional benefits are increased safety and security assistance for drivers losing direction or for vehicle breakdowns.