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Big Data Is Everywhere, Even in Your Horse Trailer
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Big Data Is Everywhere, Even in Your Horse Trailer

You can’t go online these days without hearing the term “big data.” Big data refers to the massive amounts of information collected and then stored from millions of sources around the world. Big data has seeped into every crack of American life — even the equine population and horse trailers.

Horse owners are already aware of the ocean of wearables and smart technology to monitor their horse's health. One example, the “SeeHorse,” uses an app that sends data directly to your phone about your horse’s pulse, temperature, and breathing rate. Equine specialists are also using these types of smart gadgets for training and tracking.

Many of these technological marvels are even more useful by not having a battery to charge. Instead, they use the kinetic energy of the horse to stay charged and working around the clock. For many devoted horse lovers, these tools are a godsend, offering peace of mind and efficiency.

What Is an ELD?

As part of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Act, the U.S. government mandated that as of 2018, all commercial vehicles must have an electronic logging device (ELD) installed. An ELD is intended to collect driving data and replace paper records for big rig drivers. This rule applies to all commercial drivers who are required to submit records of duty status data and hours-of-service (HOS) records.

Horse trailers are large vehicles and subject to the law regarding ELDS. Therefore, if you travel with your horses to competitions, your horse trailer must be outfitted with an ELD system. You also need to learn how to use it to report HOS records to authorities. The only exception would be if you drive your horse trailer less than 8 hours in a 30-day period.

The ELD system was initiated to make the roads safer and automate driving information for commercial vehicles along with reducing paper waste. ELD devices standardize data and help drivers comply with federal regulations without the hassle of having to keep manual records.

The Impact of Big Data on Horse Trailers

The rules regarding the FMCSA prohibit commercial drivers from driving more than 11 hours at a time. When the ELD logs 14 hours, it prompts the driver to stop and take a 10-hour rest. The ELD also tracks any infractions to this rule. If you violate this regulation, you may be fined.

The new regulations also require that drivers take 30-minute breaks and cannot drive longer than 8 hours without taking at least one break. When traveling to competitions in different parts of the country, this could cause delays and if there are unforeseen traffic issues, even missing a deadline.

The more significant impact for horse breeders or competitors is when hiring a horse trailer to transport your assets to a competition, you will need to plan early and leave extra time. You may also have to pay more for the added time and built-in breaks. Other concerns are finding safe, appropriate places to park to rest and the cost of implementing the ELD system into your vehicle.

Privacy Concerns

Addressing privacy and security concerns, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) mandates that your ELD device must transfer data using a “telematics” approach using Wi-Fi or a local, direct USB transfer at an inspection station. The FMCSA has a checklist of requirements when choosing an ELD vendor and a list of approved devices and manufacturers.

Any time data is transferred over the internet; there is a cause for concern with safety and privacy. To ensure security, the Bluetooth connection is only initiated when transferring data and then disconnected. The internet connection used for the data transfer is also limited.

2018 is the compliance year concerning phases for implementation of ELD for commercial drivers. The FMCSA offers full training on all the specifics to be sure you are complying correctly.

Big Data in Business

According to experts, “humans generate 2.5 quintillion bytes of data per day.” Companies, both big and small, are leveraging this information to streamline their operations, improve customer satisfaction and retention, and improve the way they do business.

From banking to transportation, big data is changing the global landscape of business. Even smaller companies are finding ways to use the connectivity of the internet and data to manage their businesses through smart devices and apps. Farming is making use of big data to help grow crops more efficiently.

Retail outlets and restaurants are using online apps for instant feedback and product reviews to gain insight into customer satisfaction. Big data helps smaller companies to be more efficient with their marketing dollars and to customize products and services tailored to the needs of their clientele.

As these technologies evolve, big data collection methods and storage options will continue to reach further into business and private industry. Modern innovations cannot be ignored by any market. Therefore, a better approach is to embrace the ways these technologies can improve your business.

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