By Mark Boada, Senior Editor
When it comes to running a fleet of vehicles, what’s the best way to save a business money: spend as little as possible on the goods and services the fleets need to operate, or to run the fleet so it operates at the lowest overall cost?
If you answered “both,” Bingo! That’s the view from the top of the industry, but it’s not always the way fleets are run.
Over the past 10 to 20 years, those in charge of purchasing have gradually gained leverage over fleet management. The reason is clear: fleet has long been seen as an overhead expense, and in an increasingly competitive world, controlling costs is one of the keys to survival.
Advances in technology and huge amounts of data have allowed Element Fleet Management to move forward in the world of AI and machine learning.
Keep you and your passengers comfortable and safe by utilizing your car's heater for maximum benefits.
“Modern cars don't need much to warm up before taking off, but it does take a long time for cars to warm up if they're not moving,” says Jake Fisher, director of auto testing at Consumer Reports. “The sooner you move, the sooner the engine begins working, the sooner the engine starts creating heat that will warm the passengers.”
Some people don't want to use the A/C a lot in the summer to save fuel (and by extension, money). The good news is, in the winter, the heat is free (unless you have an electric car).
Read the article at MSN.
Velodyne LiDAR (light detection and ranging) has cut the price of its latest product, the VLP-16 puck, in half to about $4,000. As with most new technology, the more frequently it is utilized the faster the cost falls.
The technology is the brain of an autonomous car and its most expensive component ranging to about $85,000 for a more sophisticated system, in a step that takes the technology closer to broader commercial use
General Motors CEO Mary Barra laid out plans in November to launch fleets of self-driving robo-taxis in multiple large cities by 2019.
Read the article at Detroit Free Press.
Until the autonomous technology is standard and all vehicles on the highway drive themselves, cars will still get into collisions, some due to weather conditions, others because of mechanical issues, but largely because of driver error.
While all vehicles are required to meet a set of complex federal safety standards and most cars get good grades in crash tests, some vehicles inherently protect their occupants better than others in a crash.
The models having the most frequent injury claims largely consist of some of the smallest rides on the road, and are those most often chosen by or for younger drivers because of their affordable sticker prices.
Read the article at Forbes.
Gnarly road planning, terrible weather and reckless habits make the Russian capital one of the worst cities in the world for drivers, thus building self-driving cars a unique challenge.
Disturbances like car wrecks, construction and government motorcades can wreak havoc for miles. Seat belts are scorned, and traffic laws widely ignored; speeding violations are enforced with $4 fines, paid by phone. The rate of road fatalities is nearly double that of the US, with an average of 20 serious accidents a day just in Moscow.
“We don’t have the luxury of California roads,” says Olga Uskova of Cognitive Technologies, a Russian software maker that specializes in autonomous vehicles. “The environment is ever-changing: the snow has covered traffic signs; it’s raining on your windshield, the sun is blocking you. Our people train using these kinds of data.”
Read the article at The Guardian.
Air travel is one of the safest methods of getting from point A to B, and in the near future, driverless car technology will reduce traffic accidents and related crash injuries and deaths, making road and highway travel safer.
Aviation's safety record can be attributed to the fact that it's among the world's most regulated industries, with information being shared among manufacturers, airlines and governments any time an airline or manufacturer detects the smallest defect in a mechanical part ensuring that maintenance engineers worldwide are on the alert.
The Trump administration dropped Obama-era plans that would have allowed regulators to approve self-driving systems before they go on sale -- similar to the type certifications common with aircraft, in favor of a lighter-touch approach.
Read the article at Bloomberg.
In the column Creating a Safety Culture That Surpasses Compliance Goals, CEI's Brian Kinniry says, “The goal is to win hearts when implementing a safety culture.” If you seek to transform your safety culture to the point that safe practices become second nature instead of compliance driven, this is a must-read article.
Coincidentally, NETS has just released a Cost of Collision Calculator for employers. They say, “ With this data, you’ll be able to make the business case to support investment in employee-wide safe driving programs.”
Safety is just one of the vital-to-fleet topics on the agenda at NAFA 2018 Institute & Expo, Whether you are a fleet veteran or a novice, I&E is the place to be -- April 24-27 Anaheim, CA
Editor in Chief