Microlise: ‘Big data can help freight sector boost road safety in urban areas’

The freight sector is on the verge of harnessing the power of big data to boost the safety and efficiency of their fleet movements in urban areas, according to telematics firm Microlise.

Speaking ahead of his appearance at next week’s Freight in the City Expo in London, Matthew Hague, executive director of product strategy, said: “We will see big data being used by transport service providers in our towns and cities within months, using it to improve the efficiency and safety of freight vehicle movements.”

He added: “Operators will gain the ability to accurately predict risk based on time of day and conditions, enabling street by street profiling.

“It will enable transport service providers to limit risk, thereby potentially reducing insurance costs and disruption to fleets and drivers.”

Microlise has been exploring the capabilities of using big data in fleet technology through a series of research projects over the past two years, supported by government funding.

The company already captures several billion miles worth of road data each year, however it said putting this vast amount of information to good use can be the challenging part.

“How to glean useful information from an ocean of data is a challenge, but new technologies and techniques are enabling us to scale up and process large data sets in a quick and agile way,” said Hague.

One of Microlise’s Innovate UK-funded projects, in partnership with the University of Nottingham, was to achieve customer and market value from high volumes of complex data generated through real-time telematics.

This has now been completed and Microlise said it will soon be in a position to incorporate this research into new products designed for the freight sector.