It’s that time of year again; back-to-school season. But if you’re a parent like me, this time of year can induce great anxiety, especially when it comes to dropping the kids at the bus stop.
Will the bus be on time? Did we miss it or is it running late? What if the weather is bad – should my kid stand outside and wait? Did the bus make it to school? Is my child safe?
Fortunately, telematics and connectivity are yielding unprecedented solutions that are revolutionizing road safety, all while allaying the fears of parents like you and me.
CalAmp recently acquired Synovia, a leader in fleet intelligence and developer of the industry’s foremost school bus mobile tracking application, aptly called “Here Comes The Bus.” In a recent Fox Business interview, I shared how this app can yield cost efficiencies for fleet management, improve bus services and, most importantly, make roads safer for kids as they head back to school. Let’s dig deeper into how apps like these are painting a brighter and safer future for our students.
Here Comes the Bus
In today’s world, GPS trackers are now standard on many school buses. Here Comes The Bus takes these capabilities to the next level – leveraging fleet intelligence software in an easy-to-use mobile app and website – designed with seamless integration and an intuitive interface. The app allows parents to actually see the location of their child’s school bus on the device of their choice – be it a smartphone, tablet or personal computer.
Parents can have peace of mind with information like where school buses are relative to their routes, expected arrival times, and visual maps of the bus stops. The app offers customization features so parents can even receive notifications when the bus is nearby or if there has been a change in schedule.
No longer does a child have to wait in the dark in freezing temperatures, pouring rain or scorching sun. Here Comes the Bus takes the stress out of mornings by enabling parents to know exactly when the child’s bus is arriving, reducing that child’s time spent standing by the side of the road….unattended.
As of today, the app has garnered 1.5 million downloads, serves hundreds of school districts and has close to 400,000 daily users.
Telematics Accelerating the Future of Road Safety
Gone are the days where parents must call the school to check on the status of their children’s bus. Telematics has taken fleet management and school services into a new era of convenience and cost efficiencies. Students knowing when their bus will arrive means fewer missed pickups and delays, quicker routes and less wasted fuel. For one school district, just reducing five minutes from every route can reduce costs by up to $100,000 per school year.
The next iteration of Here Comes The Bus holds even more promise for schools, parents and students. Imagine not just knowing the location of your child’s bus but also that your child is actually on that bus. Through the use of barcode IDs and student ridership tracking software and hardware, parents can individually track their children from the time they get on the bus to the exact point where they exit the bus. Bus drivers have access to actionable intelligence in the event a student boards the wrong bus or gets off at the wrong stop. So parents can rest assured their children are safe.
The proliferation of telematics and the rise of more accessible GPS software will continue to deliver a smarter and more connected world. Through apps like Here Comes The Bus, schools can save costs and improve services, parents can take a little edge off their stressful mornings and, most importantly, students can safely get to school. That’s the mission of CalAmp – innovative fleet intelligence that paves the way for a new era of road safety and a better future for our children.