Telematics-Google Earth-question for P-man

Discussion in 'UPS Discussions' started by soberups, Mar 14, 2009.

  1. soberups

    soberups Pees in the brown Koolaid

    From another thread concerning backing;

    >>>To really know if a backing event was correct, the supervisor should go into Google Earth and overlay the telematics data with the satellite view. Then the supervisor can make the determination instead of the computer.


    On a whim, I used Google Earth and Mapquest to look up some of the rural addresses on my route.

    I have stops with long driveways or on private, unmarked roads where Google Earth cant even find the house. If you Mapquest it you will be shown a spot on the road that might be a mile or more away from the actual residence where the backing event took place. At best, Google might indicate the general location of their mailbox by the side of the highway.

    Mapquest and Google Earth are also useless in areas like mine where the road, driveway and house are all hidden beneath a canopy of trees. Fully half of the homes on my rural area cannot be seen at all from a satellite photo.

    Google earth also cannot determine whether a particular road is paved, gravel or dirt. It also cannot distinguish level ground from a steep grade. Everything looks flat on a map or in an aerial photo.

    If we are using Google Earth to calculate time allowances and determine proper backing procedures, how are these shortcomings addressed?
  2. InTheRed

    InTheRed New Member

    Doesn't the telematic data use GPS coordinates that would overlay onto the google earth data, rather than try to use the street address and number break data that would be used when you enter an address manually into google earth? That would be the difference between finding where the incident occurred and just "googling" it.
  3. Monkey Butt

    Monkey Butt Dark Prince of Double Standards Staff Member

    Normal procedure is to blame the driver.

    jk :st_patrick:
  4. soberups

    soberups Pees in the brown Koolaid

    Yes, but the picture it takes may not show anything.

    Heres an example from my route. Go to and type in "34620 Corral Creek road, Newberg OR 97132." It will show a road map with a red star. Then click on "show aerial map" up in the right hand corner of that screen and you will get a Google Earth sattelite photo....of a mountainside full of trees with a few visible roofs. You can see parts of the main road, but you cannot even see the roof of that house much less its driveway. You cant tell if there is any safe way to park on the road, or whether or not it is possible to walk this stop off.

    In addition to evaluating backing, this techology is also being used to do time studies. Some guy in a room someplace is using these pictures to determine the allowance for this delivery area. If he cant see the house, cant see the driveway, cant tell whether the road is paved, and cant tell whether its flat or a 12% grade, upon what basis does he calculate a time allowance in the first place?
  5. pretzel_man

    pretzel_man Well-Known Member


    First, I should say that you are exactly right. The new time study program will NOT work for that address or much of the delivery territory near it. Its very wooded and the satellite image doesn't help in determining park position and walk distance.

    I think I should clarify some things however.

    The google earth portion of the Time Study program only evaluates walk distance. Speed, backing, grade, etc. is NOT determined through the maps.

    Travel time is calculated using samplings of thousands of actual travel times from thousands of drivers. They average out the times and create a "travel curve".

    BTW, the travel portion of work measurement is probably the most inaccurate. Its also pretty loose. Its rare to see travel as the reason for overallowed.

    Next, I should point out that time study doesn't study a driver, it studies an area. As I look at the delivery territory surrounding the stop you gave, portions can be studied using the new program. The wooded area of course would require a time study observer to sample walk distances by physically looking at the area.

    Finally, you are pointing out one of the things I really like about the new program. It can be audited. You can look at an aerial view of the stop and see if the estimation is correct.

    In the example you showed, if you saw a push pin at the park and delivery position, you could fairly say that could not be properly gathered from the map.

    Sorry for the long answer.

  6. tourists24

    tourists24 Well-Known Member

    Well,,, I cant wait for them to do a time allowance for my mall route then. Sometimes I park that truck at a spot and it doesnt move for 2 hours or more at a time. If google cant see through trees for a house and driveway, I wonder if it can see me pushing my cart in the mall?
  7. InTheRed

    InTheRed New Member

    Google can do anything.

  8. brownmonster

    brownmonster Man of Great Wisdom

    Finally, you are pointing out one of the things I really like about the new program. It can be audited. You can look at an aerial view of the stop and see if the estimation is correct

    If the error detected is in the companies favor it will be ignored. If it is in the drivers favor it shall be corrected.
  9. soberups

    soberups Pees in the brown Koolaid

    The most recent timestudy of my route...including the area in the map... did not involve an observer who rode with me. It was done entirely using google.

    The fact that the results can be audited does not mean that they ever will be audited. Unfortunately, the standard company practice for dealing with an inaccurate timestudy has always been to harass and bully the driver into working off of the clock in order to make up the time, rather than to take an honest look at whether or not the study is fair to begin with. In my 22 years with UPS I have never seen a timestudy reevaluated. And I doubt that I ever will.

    The study is a square peg; the reality of the route is a round hole; and the only tool given to management for solving the problem is a hammer. I am not seeing where google will change that.
  10. pretzel_man

    pretzel_man Well-Known Member

    As I said, the stop you showed cannot be properly studied using Google.

    I don't think its inappropriate for you to ask to see the study. I've shown all information to drivers before. I've even taught how to do work measurement.

    I wonder how they would react if you asked to see the Google Earth study.

  11. trplnkl

    trplnkl 555

    That's funny. Did you notice that in the first street level scene, there was a UPS truck at the curb in front of the business?
  12. local804

    local804 Well-Known Member

    Some Manhattan routes dont move all day.
  13. Paid-over-in-Maine

    Paid-over-in-Maine 15 more years of this!

    I'm sure if they knew it was there they would have that part removed.
  14. UpstateNYUPSer

    UpstateNYUPSer Very proud grandfather.

    Not only can they see you pushing the cart but they tell which fast food place you choose to eat at in the food court.
  15. Hangingon

    Hangingon New Member

    In 25 years, and at least 6 time studies, I've never been allowed to see any of the actual studies. I've been complimented on my methods and efficiency but invariably after the TS I spend 3 minutes a few days later being told the reason I'm losing 30 minutes on my time allowance is because I spent too much time on package selection.
    When I ask to see the TS and compare it to the previous one I'm normally told those are unavailable, or else (in one memorable instance) the warehouse it was kept in burned down and all the records are gone.
  16. soberups

    soberups Pees in the brown Koolaid

    Its sort of like asking for an audience with the Wizard of Oz. Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!!!
  17. faded jeans

    faded jeans just a member

    Haven't had a time study in 12 years, but they do keep shaving time off.
  18. gded

    gded New Member

    Im a 26 yr veteran. I know they shave off time on my route. of course I'm getting older and moving a little slower, but my service never misses a beat. oh well~~~:happy2:
  19. iowa boy

    iowa boy Well-Known Member

    Kinda funny, google can take a picture of our trucks and they don't get into trouble, but look out if one of our coworkers does it, you can and will get fired or "stugged"!

    sorry steve I had to:wink2:
  20. brownsugar

    brownsugar Member

    Anyone ever see the commercial about the "Dots"? I think it's a wireless push to talk commercial. There's a line about "don't mess with the dots". That's what telematics reminds me of and all the drivers now become the "dots".