Larne Borough Council is a Local Council in County Antrim in Northern Ireland. They track over 40 of their vehicles with Quartix, including vans, sweepers and refuse trucks.
Larne Borough Council has made huge savings by reducing mileage, idling and improving driving performance with the Quartix vehicle tracking system. Larne Borough Council first identified telematics as a useful tool to cut costs in 2008, but the project stalled due to concerns raised by staff via the trade unions. When the project recommenced in 2011, a policy was put in place in conjunction with the unions from the start, gaining their approval and support and guaranteeing a successful implementation of the technology throughout the fleet.
After trialling different systems, Larne Borough Council opted for Quartix, impressed by its driving style monitoring and its ease-of-use: “The Quartix system is comprehensive and has advanced features but it isn’t overpowering – it’s very user-friendly,” says Philip Thompson, Director of Environmental Services. Larne Borough Council has strongly focused on three areas in order to make savings and improve safety across their fleet: cutting down on idling time, reducing mileage and improving driver performance.
Refuse, Parks, Street Cleansing and Property Maintenance departments all use the system, with reports emailed directly to the line managers. Reports include details and totals of idling time for each vehicle, which helped the council reduce idling by 13% in the first year. They also use the Daily Route Maps to make sure the work is being undertaken in the most effective manner and no unnecessary journeys are being taken, helping reduce mileage by over 20.5% in the first 12 months. Mileage was reduced by over 20.5% in the first 12 months
Quartix’s leading driving-style monitoring suite has also been a key tool for the council. Daily and weekly reports detail speed, acceleration and braking and give an overall score for a quick indication of driver performance, whilst the Driver League Table allows an easy comparison across the fleet. “The League Table highlights how good the vast majority of drivers actually are, but when we do notice poor driving we bring it to their attention in an informal manner,” explains Elaine Smith, Operations Manager.
“The drivers are very embracive. They realise they have a part to play in helping the council make savings and that running the council in the most effective way is to everyone’s benefit.” The work carried out with the Quartix vehicle tracking system resulted in a substantial fuel saving of 14% and a considerably lower carbon footprint. Harsh acceleration and braking incidents have decreased by 34%, making driving safer, greener and more economical.
Quartix have also listened to Larne Borough Council’s needs to help them get the best out of the system: “We appreciate the responsiveness from Quartix and their flexibility,” says Philip Thompson. With big changes planned for Northern Irish councils in the next couple years, telematics is set to become the norm: “I can only see vehicle tracking becoming even more essential,” concludes Philip Thompson. “The Quartix system is comprehensive and has advanced features whilst being very user-friendly”.