Every day in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia during school days, more than 1,000,000 students are transported throughout the country by more than 15,000 school buses. Estimates show that the school bus system transports twice as many people as all other transit modes combined in a day. However, there are few security mechanisms in place and almost everything relies solely on human intervention.
Over the past few years, there have been instances of pupils being forgotten inside the school bus for several hours. Incidents like bus accidents and kidnapping of children have also been on the rise. To combat these issues and safeguard children from harm, it is crucial to implement a robust system that can provide constant tracking for millions of children on their way commuting to and from school.
Recognizing the need for improved safety, many government agencies in Saudi Arabia now require school buses to be equipped with GPS trackers. Queclink, in collaboration with its client, an IT company specializing in fleet management solutions, has developed a competitive solution utilizing its GV350MG LTE advanced tracking device. Through its ability to integrate various wired and wireless accessories, the device detects and uploads data in real-time, reassuring the school and parents about the children and better securing student safety on the move.
To keep track of students on the bus, two conditions must be met. The first is that the exact number of children on board can be recorded and reported in real time, taking into account those that get on and off halfway. The second is that each student be identifiable, so that their location won’t be sent to some other parents by mistake and the driver can be notified when the student misses their stop.
While many experts and companies have proposed facial recognition systems as a solution, the public remain skeptical of the approach as it appears laborious in terms of data entry and concerning in terms of data privacy. And the solution itself has also proved to be limited in functionality when the student wears a face mask, as is the case with the pandemic.
Queclink’s GV350MG offers a more practical solution for school bus tracking in Saudi Arabia. The device can connect a variety of external sensors and accessories through its many interfaces. Using the two RS232 serial ports, the GC350MG integrates both an APC (automatic passenger counter) and a barcode scanner, enabling accurate headcount and identification of all students on board.
The APC, installed over the bus door, is essentially a sensor that counts both the in and out numbers as the children get on and off the bus. When an opening or closing of the door is detected, the sensor takes pictures of the passengers at the door, identifies their motions, after which the GV350MG calculates, updates, and uploads the on-board number accordingly. This feature allows the driver to know if there is any student left on the bus when they arrive at the destination, ensuring that no one is forgotten or locked up inside the bus, especially when the student falls asleep in their seat.
A barcode scanner is also connected to the device and plays a vital role in confirming the identity of each student. The procedure involves scanning a QR code that is present on the student’s ID badge. Once the code is successfully scanned, the GV350MG will instantly identify the respective student and transmit the relevant data to the end application (APP for parents). Parents will receive real-time updates about the precise locations of pickup and drop-off points, as well as the exact arrival times of their children.
Utilizing the device’s 1-wire interface, the GV350MG can realize driver identification so that only the authorized drivers will be able to start the bus. To protect students from harsh driving behavior and potential risks, the device also supports speeding detection and geofence feature. In the event that the driver deviates from the designated route or surpasses the pre-set speed limit within the geofence area, immediate notifications will be sent to both school authorities and parents.
In addition, the device also features a panic button, which allows the driver to send out SOS alerts to the school bus authorities with real-time location in emergency situations, so that necessary assistance can swiftly be provided.
With the CANBus interface, the GV350MG can monitor the fuel level in real-time. The device can also detect idling status and pinpoint location of the school bus thanks to its built-in motion sensor and GNSS module, all of which contribute to enhanced school bus fleet management efficiency.
The solution powered by Queclink’s GV350MG has elevated the security of school bus transit and added a number of benefits for all parties involved:
- Enhanced Safety and Peace of Mind
The school bus tracking solution provides real-time monitoring and tracking, ensuring the safety and well-being of students during their daily commute. Parents, school authorities, and school bus drivers can all have peace of mind knowing that the whereabouts of the students are being closely protected.
- Timely Communication and Quick Response
The device sends reports and notifications to both the authority’s server and the school bus mobile application, which promotes better communication and engagement between the school and parents. The transparent and reliable communication channels can also facilitate quick response in case of emergencies or unexpected events, enabling effective collaboration between all stakeholders involved in school bus transportation.
- Improved Operational Efficiency
The solution helps improve bus operation efficiency, making it easier to manage bus routes, schedules, and student pick-up and drop-off locations. Automatic passenger counting and student identification features eliminate manual record-keeping and reduce errors, ensuring accurate data for each bus trip. This leads to optimized school bus fleet management, reduced transportation costs, and an overall improvement in operational efficiency.
Since 2009 Queclink Wireless Solutions has been “Driving Smarter IoT”.
Queclink is a pure play IoT hardware designer and manufacturer working with many well-known industrial and consumer companies to bring innovative IoT solutions to market. Its business units span transportation, asset and mobility, networks and agriculture. With 52 million IoT products delivered to over 140 countries, Queclink inspires data-driven solutions for its worldwide customers.