Wessex Water Utilities Vehicles Wessex Water Utilities Vehicles

Wessex Water Utilities Vehicles

This case study demonstrates our ability to provide solutions based on hardware other than our own computers.

We were approached by Bristol Wessex Billing Services Ltd (BWBSL, a company partly owned by Wessex Water) because Wessex Water needed a rapid solution to integrate their existing Panasonic Toughbook laptops into a number of their vans. The Toughbooks needed to be used to record data from wireless-enabled road-side water meters, which were able to transmit data over a long enough range such that the vans could collect data by driving slowly past the meters, without actually needing to stop.

Because the Toughbooks needed to record the data while the vehicle was moving they needed to be securely mounted, and it was crucial that the solution did not distract the driver when the vehicle was moving.

While the Toughbooks were collecting data they required very little user input, so it was decided that the best place to mount them would be under the passenger seat. In the Ford Transit Connect vans used by Wessex Water, the passenger seats easily tilted forwards to provide access to the Toughbook if required.

After our initial meeting with Wessex Water we organised the manufacture of a custom mounting bracket to secure and power the Toughbooks underneath the passenger seat, and then installed the solution on-site at several of Wessex Water’s depots across the South West.

Mounting the laptops under the seat provided several advantages:

  • Because the system was inaccessible to the driver while the vehicle was moving it removed any temptation for the driver to attempt to use the system while the vehicle was moving.
  • Because the system was completely hidden from view it ensured that the vans presented no extra target for thieves
  • The existing seat mounting holes already present in the vehicle were used to secure the system, meaning that the docked Toughbooks were thoroughly secure, and wouldn’t cause injury or damage in the event of a road traffic accident.

Mike Paul, Head of Revenue Operations at BWBSL said:

“Before contacting In-CarPC we were unaware of what could be achieved using their built-in computers. However, because we already had the Toughbooks we didn’t go down that route right now, although we will certainly be considering this in the future.

“We are very happy with the Toughbook mounting solution provided by In-CarPC – they were a pleasure to work with, and the quality of both the equipment and their workmanship was very high indeed. I would have no hesitation in recommending their service to any organisation needing computer-related equipment installed into their fleet.”

Client’s Website: www.wessexwater.co.uk