Heavy equipment are an essential, if not the most important, part of any construction sector. Infrastructure projects are public and often must deliver on time and within the allocated budget. But as is the case with any equipment or machine, heavy equipment also faces regular wear-and-tear. A healthy equipment system with careful management is ideal for project managers. Some common heavy equipment issues that project managers and site in-charges must in infrastructure construction spaces face are as follows:
- Fuel theft
- Sudden equipment breakdown
- Rash operator behavior
- Inability to monitor on-site equipment due to remote locations
These issues often hamper the timely delivery of projects while affecting the overall budgeting of the project. As the infrastructure sector of constructions spaces is of a more public nature, problems mentioned above can become a huge liability for the project supervisors. While it is true that IoT provides granular visibility into the overall functions of the equipment as well as management of the same, it is essential to know how and where the granular visibility afforded by the IoT solutions can help.
There are two main issues that every project management wants to solve: productivity and cost. Many factors like timely delivery, machine condition, operator behavior, fuel management, etc., affect the above two points and vice versa. These two are then further divided into different sectors as follows.
- Fuel monitoring and management
Heavy equipment utilizes massive amounts of fuel, namely diesel, as the primary energy source. But fuel theft often remains a serious problem that costs companies each time due to a lack of proper visibility and security measures on the equipment. IoT can provide with a range of sensors and alerts that can assist in real-time tracking of the fuel level of the equipment in use. From checking fuel levels to tracking fuel use over the productive hours to alerting in case of sudden fuel level drop, data is fed into systems to give a comprehensive view of when and where the fuel is being used or pilfered.
- Supervise Operator behavior
Equipment operators are another crucial part of heavy equipment management. Monitoring driver behavior can help the management oversee and manage workers based on their idle times, working hours, and attendance. For this purpose, tracking devices like GPS monitors or speed sensors can be integrated with the assets for gathering real-time data. The devices are attached or assimilated with the machinery, helping to locate and gather data based on current location, machine idling, driving behavior, impact sensing, etc.
- Equipment function management
Smooth equipment function is a requirement for timely completion of the construction project. Machinery malfunction and resulting breakdowns can be avoided and managed through a detailed maintenance schedule. Such preventive maintenance schedules can be tracked through customized alerts that let the operator and the management know the vehicle’s condition on- and off-field.
- Remote equipment monitoring
Perhaps the most crucial aspect of equipment monitoring. As the construction equipment are primarily based in areas that are not easily accessible, site in-charges and fleet owners often must rely on manual logging and checking the equipment condition at the end of the day to assess the overall situation. IoT integration through an application-based website that receives data from various trackers and sensors works to gain data from the trackers and sensors on the real-time working situation of the equipment like their idle times, mileage, and fuel consumption, among others.
IoT solutions for heavy equipment provide the necessary insights into asset functioning that helps all the stakeholders involved in that project, from the on-site charges to the senior level management, supervise various undertakings simultaneously on multiple levels of functionality. Anyone involved in the project management can receive the data necessary for their part of the overall project, making it easier to monitor or issue timely corrective instructions. Solutions like creating scorecards for the assets and the operators that calculate and rate the comprehensive functionality are possible as it assists the project management in making apt decisions for the overall work progress.
Tor Loco is one such solution that can provide total visibility and control over the functions and conditions of on-field equipment, leading to smooth management of the entire project.