Trucks at Work

Will fleets acquiesce to “e-inspections”?

So I got to check out this new “e-inspection” system put together by California-based Drivewyze Inc. yesterday at the West Friendship weigh and inspection station outside Baltimore, MD, yesterday – an interesting “cloud computing” platform that allows trucks to electronically send not only vehicle weight information but electronic logbook data and safety history in real-time to enforcement officers, hopefully allowing them to bypass such weigh/inspection sites altogether.

Drivewyze’s Brian Mofford provided an overview of how the technology works below:

The question for fleets is simple: does such a system offer a change to cut operating costs?

Brian Heath, Drivewyze’s president, such thinks so as being able to bypass such stations would provide carriers a chance to save time, fuel and money. 

By adding in the chance to also send commercial driver’s license (CDL) and hours of service (HOS) information, too, fleets could further reduce the times their trucks and drivers would need to pull over for inspections – if of course they maintain a good record.

Heath for one believes trucking industry should be in his words “very motivated” to have such real-time driver and vehicle safety screening events count as an “e-inspection” in their safety profile.

“The hope would be that e-inspections could be accepted by FMCSA [the Federal Motor Carriers Safety Administration] as a new type of inspection that would count as a credit in a carrier’s CSA [Compliance Safety Accountability] score,” he added. “This reward would strongly incentivize carriers to participate in the program. The more FMCSA rewards carriers for investments in this technology, the more information the industry will be willing to share in exchange.”

Will the industry bite? Right now Heath told me that only 15% of truckers participate in the bypass system. But he thinks if the costs to join remain low – and he’s estimating it at $6.53 per month per truck – that might just tip the scales.

We'll see.

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