Like most forms of modern technology, GPS has become an extraordinarily helpful tool for anyone with the ability to look up anything and everything location-based. And the trucking industry is no exception as hundreds of thousands of drivers throughout the United States rely on GPS technology to get them from Point A to Point B via the most efficient and safest routes.
However, there’s a major difference between having a GPS device and using the right one, as well as knowing how to use it correctly. GPS devices can have disadvantages when the technology is used improperly. Nonetheless, it's a popular commodity.
In New York City, roughly 200 trucks hit bridges every year and just about 80 percent are caused by truck drivers that were misguided by a GPS device, according to a study by the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT). Some drivers fail to notice that not all GPS displays are created equal. Non-commercial, store-bought devices often fail to consider road restrictions and overpasses which may not have the clearance height for massive trucks or larger-than-usual vehicles.
The study suggests that trucks from out of state are more likely to get into these types of accidents because the drivers are unfamiliar with the highway infrastructure of areas like New York’s parkways, which are meant for car traffic only.
The NYSDOT study also showed that many GPS devices aren’t labeled for specific vehicle types or industrial use. Instead, they’re intended for compact vehicles and often do not take into account industrial-sized fleets.
Fortunately for businesses, intuitive GPS technology options are available. Using a GPS device that can be customized to consider the size and type of your vehicle, in addition to providing precise turn-by-turn navigation to the most efficient routes, is crucial for any fleet size.
Teletrac, a leading cloud-based GPS fleet tracking provider, offers in-vehicle devices with powerful on-board navigation software that seamlessly integrates with GPS technology, providing drivers with clear, turn-by-turn voice-guided directions that help steer vehicles away from unsafe areas. The display's software takes into account a vehicle's size--such as weight and height--and type, as well as road restrictions, such as posted speed limits and blocked roads.
Drivers are guided through time-saving routes via a touchscreen map display. Continuous navigation capabilities in day or nightime mode inform drivers when they're going off route or have missed a targeted exit. In addition to providing precise second-by-second directions, advanced GPS devices are also a great tool to improve arrival times and customer service.
And if a driver becomes lost, these intuitive in-cab displays automatically reroute from the most recent travel point, allowing the driver to get back on track without a glitch.
Investing in the right GPS device and driver tools is invaluable for businesses. The GPS devices you choose for your fleet can make or break your bottom line, so research and select wisely.