A stolen 24-ft. Penske Truck Leasing delivery van was recovered and local authorities—
thanks to Penske’s proprietary cellular- and satellite-based Fleet I.Q. asset management solution—apprehended the thief. The vehicle was stolen from the company lot of Bossier City, LA-based logistics provider DuPar Louisiana Inc.

When DuPar Louisiana leased the van from Penske, it enabled the Fleet I.Q. service to monitor vehicle location and fuel economy and thereby received times-stamped location data that shows the route the vehicle takes and where it makes stops. The same information gave local authorities an electronic breadcrumb trail to the vehicle and the thief.

“Since the truck was equipped with Fleet I.Q. we knew that we would be able to help with the investigation,” said Tyson Henry, branch manager for Penske Truck Leasing.

“We were very impressed with the level of detail provided by Penske Truck Leasing through the trip reports and the breadcrumb map,” said Ken Rawls, site manager for Dupar. “It was everything that we needed to apprehend the criminal.”

Penske’s truckload customers have been the early adopters of Fleet I.Q., with its base of private fleets increasingly investing in the option as the price points drops, Flynn said. Currently Penske has about 300 customers opting to use the system.

According to Michael Flynn, Penske Truck Leasing onboard technology product manager, Penske started installing Fleet I.Q. in the inside of cabs two years ago to provide its lease customers a value-added option to track assets.

“[Fleet I.Q. is] part of the customers’ full-service lease as an option,” Flynn told FleetOwner. “The point of this with all GPS systems is the ability to track the whereabouts of the truck—to see where their trucks go. With the GPS cellular-satellite system, they can log into a Penske website to get into the system.”

Besides the data on vehicle location, stops and fuel economy that can be gleaned from the basic Fleet I.Q. option, upgraded service packages electronically automate state fuel tax reporting, idle reports, driver-specific reports and logs.

“Fuel economy reporting and miles per gallon has gotten more important with diesel being $3 a gallon,” Flynn said. “There’s discussion about electronic driver logs being mandated, so the option has generated interest with customers. When they realize the administrative burden can be automated, [these features are] a big hot button with our customers.”

As evidenced by the recovery of the stolen vehicle, the security benefits of asset tracking technologies are real, if only on an anecdotal basis.

“The toughest [security aspect] with these systems is that because of the nature of GPS and satellite systems you have to put it where it’s readily visible,” Flynn said. “Some thieves can be savvy and disconnect it. It is housed in a dome and it is visible. I think that the technology could get a little more stealthy in design. That will probably be addressed in the next generation of the technology.”

For more information on Fleet I.Q., go to http://www.pensketruckleasing.com/leasing/precision/precision_samples.html