Fuel theft and wastage place increasing pressure on fleet managers, whose bottom lines are already under severe strain from rising fuel costs. Innovative new fuel measurement technology from leading asset management solutions provider QCIC ensures that fleet owners in numerous industries have full control of their fuel management.
The fuel management solution, which works in conjunction with the company’s flagship QIC-FLEET GSM fleet management solution, is comprised of capacitive probes that are fitted to the tank of the vehicle. The solution is designed for three different asset configurations, namely; singular fuel tank system, dual fuel tank system and aftermarket long-range double dual fuel tank system.
QCIC director Brian McKenzie states that there are a number of different probes that cover a wide range of tank capacities. “The solution is ideal for numerous asset types, from standard commuter vehicles and trucks, to farming equipment and large fuel storage tanks located at depots.”
McKenzie notes that the solution enables the user to monitor the fuel by taking a sample of each sensor as the vehicle moves. “A fuel graph is then used as a consumption tool. On the more modern vehicles, a CAN-BUS interface enables the user to see exactly how much fuel is burned by the engine, this, together with the capacitive probe installation gives the fleet owner total control, such as consumption per trip and over the life of the vehicle as well as fuel theft and fill-up notification and reports.”
Fuel theft – a growing concern
According to McKenzie, truck stops are a hotbed for fuel theft. “Fuel thieves use a telescopic jacks that has a sharpened steel pin welded to the top. Moving underneath the tank, they then push a hole in the tank from the bottom, and take the jack out, place a container underneath to capture the leaking fuel, and subsequently plug the hole. This very often happens without the driver’s knowledge, who may be asleep in the locked truck while the tank is being emptied.”
Drivers may also be involved in fuel theft, by siphoning from the tank into a separate container and selling the product at another stop further down route. The QCIC fuel management solution prevents theft from taking place, by informing the software operator of when the vehicle reaches a filling station, and the exact amount of time spent there as well as the exact fuel level on arrival.
“The amount of fuel contained in the tank before and after entry is also recorded to ensure that the risk of theft is greatly minimised. What’s more, the unit is highly-robust, with IP67 rating for dust and water. This ensures that it is able to withstand the harsh road conditions and climate with minimal maintenance, while offering an operational lifespan of around six years,” McKenzie concludes.