Rochester, N.Y. - Rochester City Council just signed off on a nearly one million dollar project that will install automated vehicle locators, or A.V.L's, in all city vehicles.
The first phase will install the devices in snow plows.
"This gives us the opportunity to really manage our fleet in a way that's most effective," Mike Quattrone, Assistant Director of Operations for the city's Department of Environmental Services said.
Quattrone said so far the city has purchased 2,000 tons of salt this year. He said the city budgets for the use of about 30,000 tons of salt each year.
Quattrone said the new equipment will help keep better track of salt used.
"We'll be able to better monitor how much salt is coming out of the truck. Say there's a malfunction and more salt is coming than it has to," Quattrone said.
A.V.L. is also expected to improve salting and plowing of streets.
It will also help with vehicle dispatching by optimizing the most efficient routes.
The goal is to reduce miles traveled, and make sure every vehicle is being used properly.
"If a piece of equipment is under utilized, should we really own it?" Quattrone asked.
Quattrone said all supervisors will be able to track vehicles from their computers, but Quattrone couldn't say if they'll check in daily.
Quattrone said for big weather events, managers will likely keep tabs often.
Based on studies the city has done, this new equipment is expected to reduce 121,000 miles which will reduce fuel costs.
Quattrone suggested these devices could pay for themselves in a few years.
Installation begins in February.
It will take six months for every vehicle to get one.
The devices are expected to be in full use by next winter.
Local company, Reltronics Technologies Inc. will install the equipment.