Ever since we started rolling out our Ctrack IVMS solution in 2007, the question of whether immobilisation should be part of IVMS or not has come up many times.
We say “No!”. Why?
IVMS is a combination of electronics, software and a communications network. Immobilise a vehicle and have ANY of these go wrong and you could have your driver stuck in a remote location – potentially outside mobile phone coverage and with no way to make contact. If the IVMS system is not fitted with an Iridium satellite unit, then there really also is no way to find your driver anytime soon. This is exactly the sort of situation that could lead to a personal disaster and be followed by massive legal liabilities.
What then is the best way to integrate IVMS and (for instance) a required pre-start process?
The solution lies in having the IVMS data and the pre-start data (either though paperwork or a mobile table with a SIM card) meet each other in a computer data centre under the watchful eye of an exception report. If a driver neglects filling in the report, the IVMS system will give us times and places – from there it is very simple to work out that a vehicle was started and driven when no pre-start report was completed. If the installed IVMS system also has driver id, then a simple exception report provided to management will have all the detail.
We have over the years on a number of times seen situations where customers are thinking of breaching what realistically are the limitations of IVMS. Using IVMS as police speed equipment is one such situation, this is another. Our view is and always has been that IVMS is best used as a post-event analysis to alter poor driver behavior and that, where possible, it should be as non-intrusive in drivers’ lives as possible.