The data that we can get today from our vehicles and devices are invaluable resources that can help us drive our business forward by making informed decisions. Fleet telematics is helping companies that rely on driving to collect data and convert it in a more digestible format to provide actionable insights on a number of metrics, such as fuel consumption, vehicle activity or driver behaviour, to mention just a few.
We have already dealt with seasonality in fleets in the past and with how telematics and vehicle data) can help companies forecast their fleet workload. In times of COVID-19, that is, the unprecedented period we are all currently living, telematics data can help us determine, through the visualization of effective vehicle activity, what might be the impact of the pandemic and the lockdown not only on transport, logistics and supply chain, but also on the global activity, on when a recovery might be expected and on how we can all get together to help beat the virus and make economy thrive again.
The team at Transpoco has been able to capture the data generated from operating and non-operating vehicles in Ireland thanks to their telematics and tracking system providing updates every 30-60 seconds from working vehicles and every hour from inactive vehicles, and to convert those data into an insightful chart.
The line chart starts on the left side displaying the traffic of a normal week, pre-COVID-19 (see 1st to 7th March). The following 2 weeks refer to the start of the voluntary work from home and to St. Patrick's Day, during which we experienced the first signs of drop in the driving activity. The Transpoco team itself started to work from home.
Between 12th and 27th March, 2020, during the period known as Delay Phase, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar announced the closure of all schools, colleges and childcare facilities until 29th March, one day after the WHO declared COVID-19 a pandemic, with the total cases in the country ranging from the initial figure of 70 on March 12th to the total of 1,819 cases and 19 deaths confirmed on March 26th. The Delay Phase is matching a 30% decrease in traffic in the aforementioned dates in the vehicle data chart.
During the Stay at Home Phase, which took place from 27th March to 5th May, 2020, traffic in Ireland has dropped a 50%, with lockdown at its peak as well as, unfortunately, the spreading of the virus, that brought the total of 21,772 cases and 1,319 deaths on May 4th.
The data chart continues to mirror the situation in Ireland as it is slowly going back to an 80% of the original traffic towards the end of May, with the start of the Easing of restrictions phase, that started on May 5th and is still ongoing.
This is just an example of how companies and governments could easily obtain this level of business intelligence to support COVID-19 efforts and local communities in the economic recovery.
According to Andrew Fleury, CEO at Transpoco, "The last few months have certainly been one of the most frightening and strangest periods in living memory in terms of public health, but also very worrying from a business perspective. In Ireland, we had little choice but to put the restrictions in place having seen the horrific impact of COVID-19 in continental Europe, but now it seems as though we are gradually moving past the worst of this time and we can begin to put everything back together."
Fleury adds: "We have been monitoring the driving distances of vehicles in Ireland since the start of the pandemic, this data has served as a barometer for the activity of our customers during this time. It is really encouraging to see the businesses getting back to work whilst the public health statistics continue to improve each day. Like everyone else in the world, Transpoco's way of working was disrupted but I am really proud of our team who constantly put customers' needs first and have continued to deliver first class service from our bedrooms, kitchen tables and even our gardens on some of the sunnier days. We know the recovery will be hard, but we are here to help at Transpoco, so if any of our customers need our assistance, please don't hesitate to reach out."