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County to add new GPS systems in more county vehicles

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Posted at 6:36 AM, Nov 18, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-18 10:43:19-05

TUCSON, Ariz. - Pima County plans on adding new GPS systems in more of their county vehicles.

Currently Pima County has more than 1,600 vehicles. Of those vehicles, more than 800 currently have GPS systems installed in them.

Those GPS systems were installed back in 2011 during phase one of the program. In this new phase, the Pima County Fleet Services Director expects more than 700 county vehicles will be getting the technology.

"Pima county drives millions of miles annually and we needed to identify a method to reduce liability as well as improve the efficiency of the county fleet are our primary goals," said Ray Ochotorena.

The primary goal behind adding the GPS systems is to foster safer driving since the GPS systems will monitor driving habits.

"Harsh breaking, speeding, seatbelts, all of those incidents we track and report to the drivers safety committee for review," said Ochotorena.

Ochotorena added more than 600 of the more than 700 county vehicles expected to receive the GPS systems are Pima County Sheriff's Department patrol vehicles.

However, before the county moves forward with installations on the PCSD patrol vehicles, it wants to make sure current technology inside of patrol vehicles syncs up correctly with the new GPS systems.

"First of all we needed to analyze the product, we needed to analyze the data that the product was producing and then we also needed to make sure of confidentiality concerns of the sheriff's department," Ochotorena said.

He added that in order to do this effectively the county is running a two week pilot program in which they plan to install the GPS systems in six patrol vehicles.

At the end of the two weeks, both county officials and PCSD will determine whether the system works for them.

If the GPS system does sync up with current technology in PCSD patrol vehicles, PCSD will be in charge of monitoring data on their patrol vehicles for confidentiality reasons, according to Ochotorena.

"If they're going to an emergency, you know, they're speeding, they're doing some harsh braking, so that policy is actually being created by the Pima County Sheriff's Department and it's currently being developed now," said Ochotorena.

According to county administrative procedure documents, the only vehicles that will not be receiving the GPS systems are PCSD stealth, or undercover vehicles.