Today’s vehicles are computers on wheels, and the data they generate is heralding a new era of fleet efficiencies. But forming best practices for controlling, sharing, and monetizing this data — the right way — will take time and necessitates a collaborative effort among stakeholders.

At the 2019 Fleet Forward Conference, a panel discussion titled, “Data Privacy and Controls: Practical Considerations for Fleets, FMCs, and OEMs” takes the data conversation the next step for fleets.

The seminar will focus on data usage governance and how data will be accessed, obtaining driver consents to use their data, providing OEMs with VIN-specific opt-ins, understanding the OEM’s commitments to data privacy, and more.

The panelists are Arun Rajagopalan, founder and CEO of Motorq; Greg Buckland, CIO, LeasePlan USA; and Mark McClung, connected strategy and business development, Toyota Motor North America. Roger Lanctot, director, automotive connective mobility at Strategy Analytics, will moderate the seminar.

“There have been many theoretical discussions on how stakeholders should access and control data from vehicles,” says Chris Brown, executive editor at Bobit Business Media and conference chair. “This seminar takes the conversation the next step into the real-world scenarios all fleets will face.”

This seminar will convene on Wednesday, Nov. 13 at 9:30am. The 2019 Fleet Forward Conference will be held Nov. 11-13 at The Forager in San Jose.

Source: Fleet Forward

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The national average gasoline price fell 2 cents to $2.71 per gallon, as demand saw a “small dip” during the week ending Aug. 5, according to AAA.

The average price is now 4 cents lower than a month ago and 15 cents cheaper than a year ago. Overall summer demand remains robust, said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson.

“While gas prices continue to drop, the rate at which they are decreasing has slowed,” Casselano said. “On the week, most states saw cheaper pump prices of only a few pennies and motorists can expect this trend to continue into early August.”

Motorists can find gasoline for $2.75 or less at 65% of the stations across the country.

States with the largest monthly decreases include Florida (17 cents), Alaska. (17 cents), Michigan (14 cents), Illinois (13 cents), Delaware (12 cents), California (10 cents), Kentucky (9 cents), Arizona (9 cents), Colorado (9 cents), and Idaho (9 cents).

States with the least expensive markets include Louisiana ($2.33), Mississippi ($2.33), Alabama ($2.35), Arkansas ($2.37), South Carolina ($2.37), Oklahoma ($2.41), Tennessee ($2.43), Texas ($2.44), Missouri ($2.45), and Kansas ($2.46).

Meanwhile, the average price for a gallon of diesel fell two-tenths of a cent to $3.032, which is 19.1 cents lower than a year ago, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Source: Automotive Fleet

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While accident management safety statistics reported this year remained mostly consistent to what was reported in last year’s annual report, crashes that occurred during parking maneuvers, or rear-ending incidents, continued to dominate the fleet industry. These incident types are prevalent in the industry, and are a perennial concern to fleets everywhere.

Alarmingly, more than 6,000 people are injured every year as a result of vehicles backing up, with roughly 2,400 of those injured being children, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

The introduction of having backup camera’s being implemented in all new vehicles beginning with the 2018 model year has seeked to curb this problem. However, the issue is still ubiquitous, especially in parking situations.

According to the National Safety Council, more than 50,000 collisions occur in parking lots and garage structures annually — resulting in 500 or more fatalities and over 60,000 injuries.

Despite the large numbers, fleets know these events are preventable.

Source: Automotive Fleet

“It’s not always a high cost because it’s usually at lowers speeds, but it’s 110% avoidable,” said Phil Samuelson, fleet and capital asset manager, USIC, with regards to vehicle backing incidents. “All the vehicles that we’ve acquired in the last three years have back up cameras and we’ve implemented back up alarms as well, but we still have backing accidents.”

Other in-vehicle technologies designed to prevent crashes in situations such as this includes automatic braking. Ten automakers report equipping more than half of the vehicles they produced between Sept. 1, 2017, and Aug. 31, 2018, with automatic emergency braking, according to both NHTSA and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

Similar to the mandate requiring new vehicles to be equipped with back up cameras, this is the second update of manufacturer progress toward equipping every new passenger vehicle with the crash avoidance technology by Sept. 1, 2022, according to NHTSA.

Since technology is not a panacea solution that will be able to make these types of different accident disappear overnight, drivers need to be more so considerate of their surroundings.

Source: Automotive Fleet

So whether or not drivers are equipped with the aforementioned technologies, reducing the risks associated with backing up begins with some simple preparation prior to driving. This includes adjusting mirrors, eliminating distractions, surveying the perimeter of the car, etc.

Other vehicles hitting a parked fleet vehicle was the No. 1 accident type for fleets in 2018. This was followed by other vehicles rear-ending a fleet vehicle, and then fleet drivers crashing into stationary objects.

“Being rear ended at a traffic light, or coming back to your vehicle in a parking lot and finding damage seems unavoidable, but there are things a driver can do differently to lessen the chance of this happening, from parking in a safer, less congested space to beginning your stop earlier, which can give the driver behind you more time to react. These safe habits are teachable moments worth reflecting on before and after an incident,” said Brian Kinniry, senior director, strategic services, The CEI Group.

Reviewing the Data

When analyzing other data that was reported, some of the data has remained mostly flat when compared to last year, though some of the data reveals noteworthy shifts.

For example, analyzing accidents by time of day, service fleets still experienced, on average, an 8%-10% accident rate during a majority of the work day. However, the peaks and valleys have altered somewhat. For example, for service fleets the hour between 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. remains the time period in which drivers are the most susceptible to accidents, and increased by 0.37%.

The time of day that is also the least likely to have service fleets experience an accident, noon to 1 p.m., had its accident likelihood increase slightly, by 0.67%.

Source: Automotive Fleet

On the other end of the spectrum, peak accident times for sales fleets showed declines in the final hours of an average work day, accidents between the hours of 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. collectively dropped by 1.77%, and accidents between 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. showed declines by 1.71%.

In other data reported for this year, accident rates for drivers aged 36-45 was listed as the age group with the highest percentage involved in crashes in 2018. Accident rates for drivers increased in every other age group except those between the ages of 46-54, which dropped by almost 4%. Drivers between the ages of 26-35 saw the biggest increase, growing by 1.46% between 2017 and 2018.

In the last five years of data compiled for the survey, drivers aged 55 and older saw the largest increase in accidents, compared to other age group chunks: in 2013 this age group was at a 15.9% accident rate and in 2018 it jumped to 20.76% after years of gradual growth.

 

Source: Automotive Fleet

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Tech Alpharetta, the nonprofit organization helping the City of Alpharetta lead in innovation, announces three new members of its Strategic Board of Directors. Tech Alpharetta’s Board, which focuses on ideating and implementing strategies for growing the Alpharetta tech community, is comprised of a veritable who’s who of some of the area’s leading, senior technology executives.

The 35-person Board features local c-suite and senior executives, along with community partners – ATDC, Technology Association of Georgia (TAG), Gwinnett Technical College, the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce and the Greater North Fulton Chamber of Commerce (GNFCC). Tech Alpharetta’s newest Board members include:

  • Cindy Jordan-Ford, VP & General Manager, USLATAM, Cogeco Peer 1
  • Felipe Smolka, EVP of Transformation, LeasePlan USA
  • James McAnally, VP, Adaptive Management Services, Pointnext, HPE

“Tech Alpharetta continues to selectively grow its Board through the addition of these three impressive innovators,” says Karen Cashion, CEO of Tech Alpharetta. “We’re excited and humbled by their willingness to join us in helping to advance Tech Alpharetta’s mission of growing technology and innovation in the city of Alpharetta.”

 Since its establishment in 2012, Tech Alpharetta and its Board have advised the city of Alpharetta on tech infrastructure and ecosystem. The Board’s recommendations led to the launch of Tech Alpharetta’s Innovation Center, the creation of the city’s economic development website www.growalpharetta.com, and other notable developments.

For more information about Tech Alpharetta, its mission and it programs, or for information about the Tech Alpharetta Innovation Center, visit www.techalpharetta.com.

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When the new pickups came in, Tom Collom found they were being drop-shipped to dealers that were 60 to 80 miles away from the office and his drivers. The agreement with a new dealer group saved the company $100 on PDI (pre-delivery inspection) fees for each truck, he was told by senior management.

Collom, a shop supervisor in West Texas for a major oil and gas producer, pointed out that the company was losing double that by having to pay drivers for an extra half day of travel just to get the trucks. The senior manager’s response? “His exact words to me were, ‘I’m showing on paper that I’m saving money,’” Collom says.

In recent years, Collom has seen a shift in the positions at his company that oversee fleet. And the way he sees it, this new blood hasn’t driven a net savings of time or money for the vehicles he manages.

“We’ve got a bunch people now that are trying to run (fleet) like bank managers and accountants,” he says. “What takes years to get the efficiency and productivity incorporated into your shop and your fleet can be totally destroyed by people who haven’t actually worked on vehicles.”

Collom used to have a good working relationship with management when it came to fleet, he says. They may not have been mechanics, but they knew enough about what was happening on the ground and under the hood to talk the same language. That’s not so true anymore.

Marc Canton, a consultant for Mercury Associates, agrees. He’s seen instances in which fleet managers with no automotive background were taken to the cleaners by repair service providers and even their own techs.

Canton recalls an instance in which a single repair was paid for three times with different invoice numbers and slightly different terminology. Other times a fleet manager didn’t have the wherewithal to sniff out an unneeded upsell or challenge a repair cost or delay. (One was told that the parts for an airbrake on an F-150 take a long time to come in.)

Read the rest of this article by Fleet Forward here.

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