SA fleets face internal and external pressures

Issue 8 2023 IoT & Automation, Transport (Industry), Logistics (Industry)

The upcoming year, 2024, looms heavy with geopolitical upheaval and economic instability, setting the stage for what could be the greatest election year of our lifetime. Justin Manson, Sales Director at Webfleet, explores the most important trends for commercial transport operators, fleet managers and other road users.

Big election year

South Africa’s general elections will be held in the dark in many places as load shedding persists. The intense conflicts in Eastern Europe and the Middle East provide a tense backdrop to the global struggle to control energy resources. With national debt strangling the South African transport sector’s ability to invest in road improvement, fleet managers contend the triple threat of rising fuel costs, a heightened risk of fatal incidents, and violent social unrest, which usually first targets transporters.

Port congestion

Inadequate investment in road, rail, and port infrastructure has left tens of thousands of containers stranded off the coast of Durban Harbour. Critical cargo equipment shortages mean the bottleneck will not be cleared for months. Until then, thousands of trucks clog South African border points and ports, causing shipping companies to levy congestion surcharges and customers to double their transport costs using air freight.

Road degradation

A well-functioning rail system would ease the burden on roads, giving room for upgrades without increasing crashes at work sites. Enhanced road surfaces and increased capacity would enable transport providers to unlock the full benefits of onboard and virtual technologies.

Road user education

While fleet operators advance driver training to optimise vehicle features and AI-powered telematics capabilities, education across the fleet value chain, from control room managers to other motorists, is crucial. Fleet managers must enforce safety rules, develop comprehensive training programmes focusing on early warning systems and AI-powered technology, organise workshops for hands-on experience, and provide periodic updates on system upgrades. Simple guides, like brochures that explain system functionalities, can further enhance understanding.

Fleet managers can better support drivers by learning, exploring and utilising the full functionality of these systems. At the same time, society needs to make driver education a much greater priority, and even introduce it as a subject in school syllabuses, with a primary focus on overall road safety.

Even more important than advancing driver assistance technologies, fleet managers must navigate challenging external conditions, while refining their own processes. Ultimately, without effectively informing and upskilling all road users, no amount of technological advancement or infrastructure investment will be able to deliver the intended benefits of alleviating costs, cutting operational costs and, most importantly, saving lives.

By harnessing AI, fleet managers can automate maintenance scheduling based on factors such as vehicle age, mileage, and usage patterns. This optimisation includes routine procedures like oil changes, and predictive algorithms can identify assets likely to break down. Proactive maintenance measures help avoid costly repairs and highway breakdowns and enable timely parts ordering to improve fleet utilisation and extended asset lifespans.




Share this article:
Share via emailShare via LinkedInPrint this page



Further reading:

Unlocking efficiency and convenience
OPTEX Access Control & Identity Management Transport (Industry)
The OVS-02GT vehicle detection sensor is the newest member of Optex’s vehicle sensor range, also known as ‘virtual loop’, and offers reliable motion detection of cars, trucks, vans, and other motorised vehicles using microwave technology.

Read more...
The promise of mobile credentials
Technews Publishing Suprema neaMetrics HID Global Editor's Choice Access Control & Identity Management IoT & Automation
SMART Security Solutions examines the advantages and disadvantages of mobile credentials in a market dominated by cards and fobs, in which biometrics is viewed as a secure alternative.

Read more...
Eliminate privacy concerns and enhance security
Suprema Access Control & Identity Management IoT & Automation
Suprema’s Template on Mobile enables secure access to corporate facilities and assets using facial recognition biometric devices, while protecting users’ privacy.

Read more...
Integrated transportation security
Guardian Eye AI & Data Analytics Integrated Solutions Logistics (Industry)
HG Travel installs an AI-powered camera system integrated across 115 vehicles throughout a fleet comprising 160 vehicles of different sizes, along with predictive and self-monitoring tools to track tyre condition, fuel consumption and theft, and overall vehicle maintenance.

Read more...
A simple system for complex protection
Surveillance AI & Data Analytics IoT & Automation
Reconeyez is a company that provides autonomous wireless visual verification systems with built-in artificial intelligence. Running on batteries, each device includes communication capabilities, creating a mesh network between the various devices, linking them to the control room.

Read more...
Zero Trust in 2024
Mantis Security Integrated Solutions IoT & Automation
The rapid development of artificial intelligence (AI) applications and uses in 2024 will profoundly impact security operations and AI-driven analytics, which can enhance threat detection, anomaly identification and predictive maintenance.

Read more...
Regal fusses over Fluss
Regal Distributors SA IoT & Automation Smart Home Automation
When the team from Fluss brought their Bluetooth-enabled device to Regal’s research team, they were hooked. Effortless in its simplicity, the Fluss device means no more losing remotes, endless waiting at the gate for visitors, scanning fingerprints, etc.

Read more...
Revolutionising networking technology for the future
Infrastructure IoT & Automation
[Sponsored] In the fast-evolving landscape of networking technology, RUCKUS Networks stands out as a trailblazer, offering innovative solutions that redefine connectivity experiences across various industries.

Read more...
Expanding cellular IoT applications in the SA energy sector
IoT & Automation Power Management
Cellular IoT is a way of connecting physical devices to the internet through cellular networks. This is not a new technology, but it has the potential to revolutionise the energy sector in the country.

Read more...
How finance services can help the IoT industry foster consumer trust
IoT & Automation
The Internet of Things (IoT) has risen across the tech industry and has become more prominent in our daily lives by connecting devices and enabling seamless automation. There are still, however, many significant challenges when it comes to building consumer trust.

Read more...