Company: Mistik Management Ltd., Saskatchewan, Canada
Operation: Forest management company is co-owned by NorSask Forest Products and Meadow Lake Mechanical Pulp. With a fleet of 189 trucks, the company manages woodlands and hauls raw materials to its parent companies’ mills for processing.
For companies in Saskatchewan, operating under the Roads and Transportation Partnership (RTA) has created additional burdens. The RTA requires fleets to monitor their trucks for speed and payload. This means that Mistik Management not only has to track speeds, it also has to closely monitor how it loads its logging trucks to ensure weight compliance.
“Older technology made it difficult and time-consuming to do so,” says Niska Hodgson, log haul and forest renewal coordinator for Mistik.
The use of driver contractors, who also haul logs to a third forest company not affiliated with Mistik, created additional complications. An answer that could address the cooperative needs of everyone involved was needed, but it required multiple companies getting on board with a common solution.
Cooperation between Mistik, its parent mills, and the third mill proved possible. Each agreed to equip their vehicles with Geotab devices and the back office with Geotab software. The Geotab database system is now providing visibility into critical metrics on fleet activities and performance. A shared database between all the companies provides custom reports for each, summarizing real-time travel information on location, speed and driving habits of drivers.
“We have created reports that allow us to see just our trucks for reporting those types of metrics,” Hodgson says. “It made it more economical for our contractors and for us too because we shared the cost of purchasing the devices between the two companies. This also meant that each truck needed only one GPS device for all three mills.”
The system gathers information on fuel consumption data and missed load-check stops. Using the data coming from the devices, Mistik has been able to more accurately determine hauling rates based on hauling distance and travel times.
There have been other benefits as well, Hodgson says. “The system has also allowed us to conduct more accurate accident investigations and utilize available information to respond to public complaints,” he continued.
There is more accuracy with the system as Geotab uses satellites for coverage in areas where cellular reception is lacking—something that is important for a fleet that is hauling into and out of remote wooded areas.
“The Geotab system has the ability to be easily customized for [a] particular operation,” Hodgson adds. “The amount of information that is available easily translates to cost savings and improved safety. It is very intuitive and user- friendly.”