Geotab Drive continues to improve both for drivers and administrators. We are excited about the coming changes and ready to give you a preview. So, here is an overview of what will be released in Version 7.
New Unidentified Driving Page for Admins
The Unidentified Driving page in MyGeotab is now in Feature Preview. This is a dedicated page that provides information about unassigned trips, for the purpose of helping administrators identify the correct driver. The page includes the following:
Vehicle groups and comments to provide context about the vehicle in question.
Trip distance, duration, and a link to a map with the highlighted route.
If available, the driver of the previous and the next trip made by the vehicle.
The ability to filter trips by annotations, minimum distance and minimum duration.
The option to identify probable Yard Moves with the “Vehicle Movement Within Zones” rule.
Administrators will be able to quickly re-assign or annotate single or multiple trips without leaving the page. Pending assignments are displayed and can be canceled by the administrator. Drivers that accept the assigned unidentified driving will now end the driving period with the same duty status that they had before the unidentified driving was assigned (previously, unidentified driving always ended with an On Duty status).
In the current version, only administrators can choose to ignore automatically generated logs. In Geotab Drive version 7, administrators can give drivers clearance to ignore them with an annotation as well. This will allow drivers to fix their own errors rather than having to contact the administrator to do so. Ignoring a log will function the same as it does on MyGeotab: an ignored log will no longer count towards HOS availability, but will still appear during Roadside Checks. UI notifications are displayed on the Drive App informing the driver of both these things.
Improvements to Asset Inspection
The Geotab Drive Version 7 asset inspection workflow has changed for United States drivers. In Version 7, inspections only need to be certified if a defect is reported. When there are no defects, the system will no longer prompt to certify the inspection. There are also some new choices available for reporting a defect that is not critical that allows the driver to move on to the next inspection item without first marking the defect repaired.
Geotab Drive Version 7 Driver Password Recovery
Drivers will no longer need to rely on an administrator if they forget their password in Geotab Drive Version 7. Drivers will now have a Forgot Password option on the login screen that will send them an email with a link to reset their password.
Most drivers dread having to deal with a roadside inspection. That dread is well founded when you consider that the drivers career is on the line every time he faces off with a DOT inspector who is just doing his or her job. Being able to anticipate what inspectors are focusing on can be a great help.
We recently found a web page that contains interactive tools that can really give the driver an edge. It contains statistics regarding roadside inspections that are searchable by state, violation type, vehicle weight, fleet size and much more. For instance, if you are going to be driving in Arkansas, you can do some quick research to see how many inspections are being conducted and what kind of violations are being cited.
FYI, Arkansas was picked totally at random, we are not picking on them.
Roadside Inspection Activity
The chart below shows that in 2020 in Arkansas there were very few Federal Inspections, but State enforcement officials were very active. About 25% of inspections are full inspections, so best to make sure my logs and inspection records, as well as my vehicle, are in tip top shape.
It also looks like the Federal inspectors were a little more stringent with drivers than local enforcement, but local enforcement was much more stringent regading vehicle infractions.
Looking at the top 3 driver violations cited, it would seem that most violators were pulled over for a relatively minor speeding infraction of 6-10 mph over the speed limit. Common sense tells us that obeying the speed limit while driving in Arkansas is its own reward.
Now that you have been pulled over for driving 7 mph over the posted speed, you can bet the inspector is going to check all of your lights and not miss a thing. Inoperative turn signals and lights will have you taken out of service in Arkansas.
Monthly Trends in Roadside Inspections
Understanding the roadside inspection trends by month can also be very interesting. From the chart below we speculate that after the initial COVID 19 shutdowns either enforcement was staying home or drivers were. It would be interesting to dig deeper to see if this is actually a seasonal trend based on some other factor.
Information is Power
Understanding the trends based on the factors discussed is certainly interesting and give drivers an edge, BUT nothing takes the place of constant vigilance when it comes to vehicle and driver safety. Our goal is for every driver to arrive home safely after every trip. No exceptions!
Ready for what’s new in Geotab Drive release 2004? To see all of the coming Geotab Drive updates vist Geotab’s blog. Here are the highlights:
Starting and Ending Odometer
In Compliance Print view on the Drive App, the system now automatically populates the starting and ending odometer fields for the vehicles used by the Driver.
Updated DVIR and DVIR attestations in Geotab Drive release 2004
New DVIR attestations are available for jurisdictions that require a specific declaration. Primarily, this is to assure compliance for our Canadian clients. Also, new DVIR fields address Canadian DVIR requirements.
Updated Clock-in/Clock-out feature
Custom code required for the Clock-in/Clock-out feature has been removed. Instead, the Clock-in/Clock-out feature is now available when Feature Preview is enabled.
Added Media Clearances to default Drive App clearance
With the new capabilities to add media files to DVIR records, additional clearances have been added to the default Drive App security user type. This allows drivers by default to administer and view media files.
Updated HOS Logs assignment
In MyGeotab, administrators can now select the correct driver using the drop down menu on the HOS Logs page. If the selected driver is not indicated as a co-driver on the HOS log, the system ignores the logs edited for the original driver and suggests new logs for the selected driver. Correcting availability for both drivers in a single edit in Geotab Drive release 2004, simplifies admin log corrections. The suggested logs for the new driver are in a requested state.
Messaging is out of Feature Preview
After several updates, the Messages feature is now out of Feature Preview. As announced in the previous release, the Messages feature has been updated.
In Geotab Drive release 2004, easily stay connected with your drivers using the new consolidated messaging feature. Threaded views provide conversation-style messages with simple to use input controls such as adding links and canned replies. Messages can be sent to devices for anyone driving the vehicle to see, or directly to users for private two-way communication. Unread messages display in tab titles for easy detection, or as shortcuts under Notifications on the main title bar. Messages can be searched using date and display filters for accurate and friendly searches.
As seen in the images below, there are now designated sections for messages to the vehicle and messages to the logged-in user. In the section for user messages, the dispatch can privately communicate between the drivers. Drivers can now communicate without first selecting a vehicle, as well as message the dispatch through the vehicle messages section or by clicking the Message Dispatch button.
Remember, to see all of the new features as soon as they are made available, turn on feature preview. Click on your username in the Geotab UI, then click options. Scroll about halfway down the page to UI Settings and click the on button to turn Feature Preview on. Don’t forget to scroll back to the top of the page and save your new setting.
What’s New in Geotab Drive?
Geotab Drive Version 2003 continues to address simplifying the workflow and navigation. There are also a few new notewothy new features, so let’s jump right in.
Availability Notifications are available by default in Geotab Drive 2003.
The 2002 release featured a new availability screen in feature preview. In Geotab Drive 2003 this becomes the default screen for drivers to review duty status notifications and monitor their driving limits. Using the Availability feature, users can:
Receive warnings for upcoming and potential violations.
Have you ever needed to know your database name?
In Geotab Drive 2003, drivers can check their company database name on the settings screen.
Improved message text for interactive prompts
What action needs to be taken by a driver is now more prominently displayed in interactive prompts.For example, for the prompt “You have logs that require action” the instructions “Tap here to review” will also be displayed alongside in bold text as a shortcut to whatever needs attention.
Improved logout workflow
To get drivers into the App and on the road faster, the logout/login workflow has been streamlined. Currently, drivers are asked to change their status to OFF or ON when logging out of the App. They were also asked to verify logs the next time they logged in. For most drivers however, the only verification required was their OFF/ON status from the previous logout. Now, the logout feature will automatically verify the ON/OFF status and prompt log verification before log out, shortening the process and simplifying the workflow.
For quite some time we have been hearing about FMCSA revisions to the HOS rules intended to provide more flexibility for drivers. At long last, several are slated to be implemented the end of next month. We reached out to some of our current clients to get their take on the coming rule changes, and the response was quite positive.
What are the coming FMCSA revisions?
The on-duty limits for short-haul operations will increase from 12 to 14 hours and from 100 air-miles to 150.
The adverse driving provision will extend the driving window two hours if the driver encounters adverse driving conditions. In the final rule, the definition of adverse driving was modified so that the exception may be applied based on the driver’s (in addition to the dispatcher’s) knowledge of the conditions after being dispatched.
In addition to splits of 10/0 and 8/2, drivers will be allowed a split-sleeper option of 7/3. Also, the qualifying period doesn’t count against the 14-hour window.
The 30-minute break provision will be modified to require the break after eight hours of driving time (instead of on-duty time) and allows an on-duty/not driving period to qualify as the required break.
What are drivers and dispatchers saying?
They all sound like positive changes that will be helpful to drivers and dispatchers.
One of our clients was dead set against ELD from the beginning. He expected it to be a royal pain with drivers unwilling to embrace the new technology, and he fought it kicking and screaming, but in the end, had to comply. After implementing and using ELD for some time, his response was utterly shocking. Monty now agrees that ELD implementation is a good thing, and that it simplifies the driver’s record keeping saving time and frustration.
Regarding the FMCSA revisions coming to HOS Rules,
It should have been done a long time ago. It moves us from making political sense to using common sense. Most important are the sleeper berth changes. It allows a driver to make better use of unanticipated situations, for instance if the highway traffic is backed up he can pull off at a rest stop to take 3 hours sleeper berth time. Since it does not count against his 14 hour window, he can make up his lost travel time after the traffic clears.
Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association expressed support for the final rule by filing formal comments. They say the new rules will accomplish FMCSA’s intended goal of providing drivers with more flexibility and control over their own schedules.