P&B Transport, Inc.

Customer Spotlight P&B Transport, Inc.

Transportation and logistics company uses Zonar technology to make its fleet ELD compliant, its drivers safer and its vehicles more efficient.

P&B Transport, Inc. has been in the trucking industry for more than 40 years. Family-owned and operated, P&B has grown from a small, three-truck freight company to an industry competitor with more than 50 trucks and 86 trailers that serve customers along the northeastern U.S. coast and Quebec.

The company’s drivers were used a paper-based system to record their hours of service. When P&B moved to ELD, drivers experienced some software adoption hurdles, and needed help getting used to the new digital system.

Getting drivers up to speed

However, with Zonar’s easy-to-use interface and the aid of a company-made “How to do Electronic Logs” video guide on using Zonar Logs, P&B’s drivers quickly got up to speed on how to use Zonar Logs on their Zonar Connect tablets for electronic logging. They also quickly learned to use them during roadside inspections.

The results spoke for themselves. In 2018, P&B only had two hours-of-service violations, both of which were due to a driver’s misunderstanding of how to use personal conveyance hours, a learning gap that has since been remedied with the available training and resources.

Now P&B’s drivers are on board with how easy Zonar’s technology makes the process. Law enforcement officers appreciate it, too.

According to Jimmy Pardo, vice president and founder of P&B, “When law enforcement asks my drivers for their electronic logs, our drivers report back that the process is simple and officers understand Zonar Z Logs better than any other solution they have used.”

Coaching drivers to higher standards

P&B has also deployed Zonar Coach to help their drivers be safer on the road. Coach is an outward-facing, smart dashcam that uses machine vision and artificial intelligence to monitor the road and identify when drivers exceed posted speed limits, tailgate, don’t stop at stop signs, brake too hard, corner too fast or accelerate too quickly. It also provides real-time, audible alerts so drivers can take corrective action when it’s most critical—preventing incidents before they happen.

At first, P&B’s drivers weren’t sure Coach was on their side. However, according to Pardo, “Once drivers took note that the Zonar camera is there to help coach them toward better driving habits and does not watch them at all, let alone all the time, they were very accepting of the technology.”

Coach also helps P&B take corrective action when drivers refuse to drive more safely. Pardo explains, “We had one driver we suspected was an unsafe driver. With Zonar Coach, we were able to capture the numerous incidents where he was driving unsafely. We used the information to try to coach him toward the better operation of our truck.”

P&B used Zonar Coach to try to make the driver adopt safer habits. When the training didn’t have the desired outcome, the company put safety first. “In his case, he refused to change his behavior,” Pardo continues, “and we had to let him go, which was unfortunate, but in the end, I have a safer fleet because of it. And I’m less concerned about a forthcoming accident.”

Trusting a partnership

In addition to ELD compliance and driver coaching, P&B relies heavily on Detroit Connect Virtual Technician, Zonar’s OEM diagnostics solution for Daimler Trucks North America and Zonar’s V4 telematics control unit.

“We are a mixed fleet but buy mostly Freightliners and noted that they came equipped with Virtual Technician,” says Pardo. “If a company with the market share and reputation of Daimler trusts Zonar, we thought they would certainly warrant looking at.”

If a company with the market share and reputation of Daimler trusts Zonar, we thought they would certainly warrant looking at.

With the diagnostic capabilities of Virtual Technician and Zonar working together, P&B records critical truck performance data immediately before, during and after a fault occurs, giving the company relevant and timely information of its fleet. Within minutes of a fault, P&B has a preliminary diagnosis, expert recommendations and directions to nearby service locations with the available parts, if needed.

With Zonar’s diagnostics capabilities, P&B can:

  • identify patterns of deteriorating parts
  • order new ones
  • schedule fixes

In fact, P&B can schedule fixes before a driver is aware of an issue or the check engine light comes on. These insights have helped reduce P&B’s truck downtime to almost nothing.

Turning data into driver loyalty

Pardo also uses the data he gets from his trucks to retain his best drivers. He’s gamified their experience and turned efficient driving into a competition.

Pardo posts in the drivers’ room at headquarters a list of the top drivers in the fleet. These drivers either have the least amount of idle time or are most fuel efficient. At the end of each month, Pardo rewards the top five drivers in each category with bonuses to encourage better driving habits across his fleet. It works.

“It’s a win, win,” said Pardo. “I get a more efficient fleet and less wear and tear on my trucks, while also boosting driver loyalty. And my drivers are incentivized financially to perform better.”

Success across the fleet

P&B’s investment in Zonar smart fleet solutions started with the company’s desire for a reliable ELD solution. The solution has led to more than ELD compliance. P&B has improved its operations across the board, with significant decreases in vehicle downtime, increased vehicle performance and efficiency, and best practice driver performance management.