The Town of Qualicum Beach embarked on a pilot project last year that required tracking devices to be installed on some of the municipalities vehicles.
This was initiated in 2017. GPS devices were installed in 14 of the town-owned vehicles with the intention of improving staff’s understanding of the how the town utilizes its fleet of vehicles.
Town CAO Daniel Sailland reported to council at its regular meeting on July 16, that the pilot project was undertaken for 12 months and during that period data was collected.
Throughout the time, tracking devicers were installed in two backhoes, one Vactor truck, one roadside mower, one Volt, five snow removal trucks, two garbage trucks and two general maintenance vehicles.
The pilot project cost the town $3,030 for installation and $5,535 for the system for a total of $8,565.
Sailland said prior to the pilot project, very little was known about fleet operations and after 12 months they have started to acquire better knowledge based on the information they have collected.
The objective of the project was to find route efficiencies for vehicles that have predefined routes like garbage trucks; review maintenance considerations and impacts; make driver behaviour adjustments and recommendation; address safety and security applications; inform future fleet purchase implications; and improve customer service.
Sailland said while they have collected valuable information on a cross section of equipment, they only have a small portion of the larger picture. He pointed out that over 50 per cent of the town’s fleet comprised of Ford F series trucks but had only one representative vehicle in the pilot project. As well, one of the graphs in the report highlighted potential savings from just a few pieces of heavy equipment of over $1,000 per month.
To have a full view of the town fleet’s operations, Sailland recommended to council that all vehicles be installed with GPS tracking devices to identify the patterns and significant cost efficiencies that the town can implement. It will cost $8,000 to have all the town’s fleet equipped with tracking devices and $15,000 for the system.
Sailland said staff is confident that annual savings will be identified in introducing GPS to the entire fleet and it will outweigh the costs.
Council approved the recommendaiton to install tracking devices on the entire town’s movable assets.