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Growth in construction sector and cold chain drives telematics take-up

That’s the finding of a new study carried out by Mix Telematics within the commercial vehicle industry across four key European markets; UK, France, Germany and Spain.

The study highlighted a number of areas of interest:

Temperature management (cold chain)

According to Global Cold Chain Market Forecasts and Opportunities 20201, the global cold chain market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 11% between 2015 and 2020. In the UK, this growth is being driven by the home delivery sector and the proliferation of supermarket convenience stores.

With telematics solutions including emote onboard temperature sensing and monitoring, and the frequency and duration of door-opening events, an increasing number of cold chain operators are today looking at telematics solutions to help improve their efficiency and ensure they are compliant with regulations.


Stolen vehicle recovery – consumer and commercial

In the UK, an estimated one third of all stolen vehicles are never recovered. In 2014, the number of vehicles reported stolen totalled 69,547. Additionally, cargo crime is reported to have more than doubled in the first quarter of 2015.

Meanwhile thieves in the UK are now reportedly parking vehicles at the roadside for a number of days after stealing them to ascertain whether or not tracking devices have been fitted.

As such a growing number of transport operators are looking to protect their vehicles and goods in transit by the most effective way possible, which in today's environment means fully utilising telematics' extensive track and trace capabilities.



With its economies emerging from recession, the European construction industry has enjoyed something of a resurgence in recent times. While growth in France peaked last year, with a slight decline anticipated in 2016, both Spain and the UK continue to do well. The Spanish construction sector grew by 2.4% in 2015 and is expected to increase by 10% this year. In the UK, urban regeneration programmes, house building, roadbuilding and major infrastructure projects such as the Thames Tideway project continue to fuel growth.

The application of telematics solutions within the sector is growing. Mix Telematics added that it is important to note that telematics can be applied to good effect not only to vehicles but also to construction industry plant and materials handling equipment.


Fuel theft

Despite falling prices at the pumps, fuel theft continues to be a major problem throughout Europe. While accurate figures are hard to establish due to many crimes going unreported, anecdotal evidence suggests that many diesel thefts are carried out by simply cutting or boring into fuel tanks, which are often easily accessible on commercial vehicles.

While telematics alone cannot solve the problem, it can certainly help through the installation of fuel level monitors linked to telematics reporting systems which provide alerts should a fuel tank begin to drain suddenly. As operators move more towards pro-actively protecting their investments, it is expected that the proportion of operators cooperating with local law enforcement agencies to facilitate rapid and effective responses to incidents of fuel theft will increase.


Waste management and recycling

With 177 million tonnes of waste generated annually in the UK alone, waste management and recycling is big business. However, with an industry facing significant economic pressures, the focus for transport companies in this sector today is firmly fixed upon efficiency in operation.

While driving down costs through improved transport efficiency is a core benefit to the waste management and recycling industries, telematics is able to go much further in terms of the gains it can help make. It is expected, therefore, to see the application of telematics within the sector continuing to increase throughout 2016 and beyond.

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Written by Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.

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