Verdant Group Case study

Company: Verdent Group Plc

The Skyline GPS advanced tracking and security system from Enigma Vehicle Systems has been installed on over 200 refuse and recycling vehicles operated by Sevenoaks-based Verdant Group Plc, one of Britain’s fastest-growing specialist waste management providers. The Skyline system provides important information to support Verdant‘s service quality focus, helping it deliver high service standards for over 20 local authorities in England and Wales.

Working in partnership with its public sector clients, Verdant provides a range of outsourced waste collection, recycling, street and beach cleaning and grounds maintenance services. It is one of the top five privately-owned companies in its sector in the UK.

As an advanced tracking and security system, Skyline comprises servers, hardware and software, that provide information for detailed, relevant and user-friendly reports on a 24/7 basis. Features of Skyline include:

  • Worldwide map coverage through Google Earth satellite images and road maps
  • Total security protection with ‘tow-away’ alert, battery disconnection and low power warning
  • Optional 24/7 monitoring through an approved Secure Operating Centre (SOC)

At the heart of the Skyline system is the Skyline unit which has been installed on all of Verdant’s new waste collection and street cleansing vehicles. The Skyline module is a small device containing a circuit board, a quad-band GSM/GPRS modem, a high sensitivity GPS receiver to improve reception, and battery back-up, all housed in a compact weatherproof housing. Its compact size lends itself to covert installation.

Using a service known as GPRS (General Packet Radio Service), which is an always-on connection similar to broadband, data can be sent at fixed intervals and received within an average, two seconds of transmission. Using GPRS, the Skyline module receives updated positions from the GPS network every second, stores this information and transmits data, via the GSM/GPRS modem, to the server. A connection is maintained 24/7, with keep-alive messages being transmitted every five minutes.

With the Skyline module, it is possible to report vehicle movements (authorised or unauthorised), tamper attempts, ignition state and a host of other data via eight input/output ports that can be used for additional monitoring sensors. Verdant uses these additional sensors to record time, location and process information for functions such as wheeled bin lifting and loading, street cleansing with powered brushes, travel speed and so on. This helps confirm that work is being carried out in the correct locations to mutually-agreed schedules and standards, a key performance element of Verdant’s contracts.

Jonathan Miles, executive chairman of Verdant Group Plc, said: “With the information provided by the Skyline system, we have an eye in the sky that tells us when and where our vehicles are operating, the type and number of operations they are executing, and how well these tasks are being completed. For example, we can track exactly when the cleaning brushes on our street cleansing machines were in the down position. We can provide clear precise records that show we carried out the specified work as agreed with our customers.”

Other features that can be monitored through Skyline include fuel and battery levels, coolant status, engine running/not running, engine covers open/closed, and so on. Each Skyline system can be customised to provide the security and telemetry data required by both the customer and user.

  • Additional options available on the Skyline system are:
  • Keypad immobiliser with remote immobilisation feature.
  • PDA access with street level images.
  • Driver identification option using electronic tags (RFID).
  • Lone Worker Protection.
  • Portable personal tracking with voice capability.

The Skyline system can be used on any vehicle and all types of site equipment from excavators, compressors and dumpers to generators, forklift trucks, traffic light sets and powered access platforms.

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