Telemetry and driver monitoring technology is helping to keep your fleet, passengers and drivers safe in a connected world 

Fleet telemetry and monitoring software has been around for a number of years now and has served operators well both in safeguarding their fleets and ensuring compliance.  

routeone recently spoke with some of its supplier partners to learn more about their offerings. 

Digitising services 

Zeelo’s technology platform offers operators the option to digitise services, which the supplier says is beginning to prove essential in certain markets – particularly across educational work. “We’re seeing that more and more operators have a lot of school contacts around the UK and schools are now asking during the tender process for a technology factor. Some operators are struggling to meet certain requirements so our biggest USP for them is to stay ahead of the competition and lock clients in,” says Head of Marketing at Zeelo Cale Pissarra. 

Zeelo says its offering helps operators to compete in places where they possibly haven’t before. We’ve had a lot of operators chatting to us at the moment that say they have not gone for tenders because they didn’t have the technology to do it. 

Crosskeys Coaches recently formed a working partnership with Zeelo in providing employee transport-to-work services. When working with Zeelo, Crosskeys drivers have the support of a 24hr helpline and driver app which together ensures a high standard of service delivery and immediate response to any problems that may arise. Says Managing Director Alan Johnson: “After a period of stress for our industry it has been refreshing to work with Zeelo given its unique and innovative methods of supporting the services we shall operate together 

At the start of each day our drivers are called by Zeelo’s team just to make sure all is well. During that call they will check the driver has all the necessary PPE and that social distancing measures are in place. This level of communication really makes our drivers feel important and that is reflected in the service they provide in return. 

The whole process has been very professional and smooth and epitomises how partnerships should be built. We look forward to working with Zeelo long into the future – a much brighter, innovative future.” 

Zeelo’s platform also allows schools to be flexible with pricing and offer a range of different passes. It means the cost can be shared between parents, schools and provider. “In some cases the school might want to offer travel for free to students but in some cases they realise that whats happening is governments are cutting bus routes that are affecting schools. The schools can’t foot the cost alone, so our technology allows them to split that cost with the parent while we can offer a subsidised rate.  

Cale says the key here is the flexibility that Zeelo can offer to coach operators, allowing them to have transparency over their business and bring things into the 21st century. This market is getting exciting and there are a lot of things moving,” Cale says.

Smart ticketing 

With around 90% of smaller regional operators using manual ticketing machines, there is an urgent need to accelerate investment in new technology, particularly as restrictions begin to ease from the pandemic. That’s the view of ticketing specialist TransMach, which says it makes life easier and more affordable for operators by fully automating the process of manual concession recording and audit reporting. 

As a service partner of more than 250 public transport operators across the UK and Europe, TransMach offers ‘all-in-one’ smart ticketing solutions to any size operator. The TM500 on-bus and TM920 handheld machines allow operators to go cashless on board. Both machines feature a contactless reader which accepts smartcards and cEMV payments, as well as a barcode scanner, which scans QR coded tickets and passes. All data is logged remotely through TransMach’s bespoke cloud-based back-office system, which also provides automated concession reporting with third party electronic reimbursement. 

In response to the new government legislation that came into force in January 2021 requiring bus operators to provide data on timetables, fares and AVL, TransMach has developed a unique software solution that enables operators to provide passengers with real-time vehicle location information through the use of an optional Bus Open Data Service with compatible SIRI data feed and GPS tracking. 

Critical insight 

Timespace Technology’s CANLink provides transport operators with critical insights into engineering data and driver performance. 

Timespace is one of the UK’s leading developers of on-vehicle digital video recorders. It has been developing and manufacturing digital video recorders and accessories for the public transport sector since 1997 and has developed the CANLink data recording unit for use as part of a Timespace CCTV system. A stand-alone CANLink option is also available. 

CANLink enables vehicle engineering data to be analysed and reviewed in sequence with recorded video footage. Incidents can be analysed, and proactive maintenance can be based on real time data, avoiding expensive equipment failure. 

CANLink provides daily Controller Area Network (CAN) engineering data via Timespace’s LANLink fleet management platform, including graphical trends, warning levels, email alerts and configurable thresholds on a per vehicle basis. 

The CAN data is also displayed via Timespace’s PCLink software. PCLink allows easy viewing, analysis and export of footage, with data from the digital video recorder’s built-in G-Sensor, GPS mapping analysis and CAN and alarm data. Live CAN data can also be viewed over 4G. 

Compliance is key 

TruTac is part of Microlise Group, a tracking and telematics specialist, and partners with telematics companies to enable to remote downloading of tachograph data for both drivers and vehicles into its analysis system. 

Director of Commercial Operations and Marketing Jemma James says the supplier is agnostic and works with any provider that wants to download verified tachograph data into its system for analysis with compliance regulations. 

“Remote downloading combined with telematics has become a big advantage since COVID-19 and also helps operators to comply with Earned Recognition requirements,” she says. 

TruTac offers modular software products allowing simple upgrades as fleets and compliance responsibilities grow. It has provided its software analysis and compliance control software to a number of operators including Alfa Travel, Falcon Coaches, Greys of Ely and Daish’s Holidays.