Thinking of fitting a GPS tracker to a tractor or telehandler so you can keep tabs on it if it gets nicked? Here are a couple of recent arrivals that are worth a look
The latest firm to join the GPS tracker throng is Norfolk company Visionaire. Its device can be fitted discreetly in any vehicle and used to provide round-the-clock live security monitoring and satellite tracking via a Google Maps-based website. If someone makes off with a machine you get an immediate text and email, the latter showing where the vehicle is on a map.
In fact you can see exactly where the vehicle is at any given moment – in real time – and the route it took to get there. Using any internet enabled device (including a smartphone) you can log in to your account at any time and track the precise location of the vehicle.
There’s extra information to be had too, like journey routes, distances covered, key on and off times, daily (and total) engine running hours, miles travelled and travelling speeds. If the vehicle is in use at the time of accessing the system, it can be seen moving across the screen in real time.
The cost of the unit is £299 and a £36 fee covers all the data transmission costs for the year.
Another GPS tracker launched this year is the Agri-Track Sentry. Like the Visionaire unit, it alerts you whenever a machine fitted with it moves or goes outside a preset area. The battery lasts at least three years, so it can be securely hidden from plain sight.
If the equipment is then either moved at a time when its owner has decided it should be out of use, or if it is taken outside a specific area, such as the owner’s farm, the Agri-Track Sentry will ‘wake up’ and instantly alert the owner by mobile phone or email, notify a 24/7 alert centre and track the location of the equipment so that it can be recovered quickly and easily.
The device retails at £495, which includes the first year’s £199 subscription to the GPS service and access to the easy-to-use web interface for customising the device’s alert settings and tracking it if it’s stolen. The device can also be set up by text message or via using web-enabled smartphones.
There’s been a lot of publicity in recent months about so-called crash-for-cash insurance scams where rogue drivers suddenly slam on their brakes to deliberately force you to drive into the back of them. They then claim damages, often far in excess of the damage actually caused.
One high-tech way to have the evidence to prove your case in court is Phantom’s video point-of-impact liability systems. These use a forward-facing video camera that continuously records the view out the front screen and then erases it a few seconds later. If there is an impact, it retains the 15 seconds before and 15 seconds after impact as evidence and also adds GPS position and a record of speeds, deceleration and braking. It costs £189.
Visionaire 0845 557 5594 www.visionairegps.co.uk
Agri-Track 0845 467 7128 www.agri-track.co.uk
Phantom 0845 130 3301 www.phantom.uk.net