Wilson Inspection X-Ray Services


The problem

9/11 changed a lot of companies, and Wilson Inspection X-Ray Services, based in Corpus Christi, Texas, was no exception.

For over two decades, Wilson Inspection X-Ray Services has delivered its non-destructive testing services to the petroleum, nuclear and other industries. These industries must adhere to strict state requirements and Department of Transportation radiography standards regarding safety and operations.

Each of Wilson Inspection’s 44 trucks is a completely self-contained mobile darkroom lab complete with chemicals, film and radioactive devices that uses x-rays to inspect and test welds in pipelines, wells, refineries and other structures to ensure there won’t be any ruptures before pumping begins.

“The nature of our service requires our trucks to carry hazardous materials,” explains Lee West, Radiation Safety and Security Officer at Wilson Inspection. “After 9/11, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission issued new regulations mandating that we account for all of our trucks all of the time to prevent anybody, especially terrorists, from hijacking our materials.

“This was a major challenge for us because our vehicles are scattered throughout thousands of square miles in south Texas between Houston to El Paso. This includes large remote areas without cell phone towers, so communicating with drivers are next to impossible.

“The only practical solution was to install GPS devices on all our vehicles. So I began researching.”

The LiveViewGPS solution

West went on the Internet to find potential GPS providers. He called several of them.

“Of all the companies I talked to, LiveViewGPS was the most receptive and the most understanding. They were eager to work with us in finding the right solution that helped us track our fleet and comply with all the regulations. Their integrated Live Trac System of hardware and software was perfect for our needs.

Originally West ordered a few Live Trac G-5 GPS Vehicle Trackers and used them for a couple of weeks to learn the system.

“Originally the learning process was complicated because we were using the web as a training manual. When I called LiveViewGPS and told them about our struggles, they wrote an app for us that solved all our problems. Now we’re adding vehicle trackers as fast as possible.

“Because of compliance issues, we keep two back-up Live Trac G-5 units activated on our shelves. If one of the vehicle trackers breaks down in the field, we can replace it immediately. When we originally talked to other companies about keeping activated units as backups, they told us they didn’t do that. When we asked LiveViewGPS, they said no problem and delivered the units.”

LiveViewGPS’ best-selling G-5 Vehicle Tracker operates on the company’s new Live Trac Platform, a next-generation, real-time vehicle tracking system offering 1-, 5- and 10-second vehicle tracking capabilities on highly sensitive receivers. Like other Live Trac units, it works in environments where other GPS units fail.

The G-5 Vehicle Tracker is small and compact, with a state-of-the-art GPS chipset and integrated internal antenna. Its internal battery backup normally lasts for two days between charges.

The Live Trac GPS Platform features reliable 99.9 percent server uptime and requires no software to install. System updates are free, and live support is built into the platform. Users log on via their web-enabled computer or mobile device and, once connected, can track multiple vehicles in real time on a high-resolution satellite map, set geofencing (zones), find addresses, see aerial or road map views, and see historical data up to 90 days. A personal dashboard allows users to set and manage mapping, reporting and alert features to meet business or personal needs.

The benefits

“Our number one concern is security,” West states. “Now we can track and locate every vehicle 24/7. If a vehicle breaks down in no-man’s land, our GPS system pinpoints their location so we can help them quickly. If a vehicle is someplace it shouldn’t be, we’ll spot it. If a vehicle should be stolen, we can immediately send its latitude and longitude coordinates to the authorities.

“By state law we have to audit every vehicle twice a year. In the past this was a hassle because we didn’t always know exactly where all our vehicles were. With our GPS system in place, we routinely run audits weekly.”

Because Wilson Inspection X-Ray Services vehicles carry hazardous materials, safe driving is of greater concern than with most companies. With the LiveViewGPS’ Live Trac system, management can spot speeding or reckless driving and phone the driver to slow down.

The Live Trac System’s large memory allows West to play back every vehicle’s route. This allows management to determine the most efficient routes between locations which saves time and fuel.

“The Live Trac System sometimes benefits us in unusual ways,” West reveals. “For example, one of our drivers got a ticket for running a stop sign. Using his route history, we were able to prove he didn’t.”

The Live Trac website’s online map not only displays the location of every company vehicle, it also includes a weather overlay—another safety consideration. Tornados, high winds and fierce storms can endanger the company’s trucks—especially out in open country. Now West can monitor weather patterns and alert drivers if they need to seek safety.

Another vital part of the Live Trac system is the reports it can generate. These include mileage, starts/stops, route locations and more. This enables West to spot any drivers that deviate from their routes, take long lunches or use vehicles for personal tasks.

“In the past, drivers were expected to stay overnight at locations, but some of them wanted to return home. As a result, they used a tankful of gas going and coming. Since we’ve eliminated extraneous driving, fuel cost savings have been astronomical.

“I’d recommend LiveViewGPS to anyone,” West concludes. “They’re courteous, responsive and extremely helpful. They don’t beat around the bush. Equally important, they’re straight shooters. When they say they’ll do something, they do it. In Texas, a man’s word remains his bond.”