(Back row, L to R) Anthony Williams, Solid Waste Driver Two; Steve Coleman, Solid Waste Driver Two; Larry Henderson, Solid Waste Drive One; Lance Rosario Solid Waste Driver Three. (Front row, L to R) Robby Robinson, Solid Waste Driver Two; Nancy Flowers, Administrative Assistant Two; Tracy Reed, Solid Waste Driver Three. - Photo: Athens-Clarke County

(Back row, L to R) Anthony Williams, Solid Waste Driver Two; Steve Coleman, Solid Waste Driver Two; Larry Henderson, Solid Waste Drive One; Lance Rosario Solid Waste Driver Three. (Front row, L to R) Robby Robinson, Solid Waste Driver Two; Nancy Flowers, Administrative Assistant Two; Tracy Reed, Solid Waste Driver Three.

Photo: Athens-Clarke County

The Solid Waste Division at Athens-Clarke County has won the Samsara Top Fleet Award for Excellence in Public Fleet Management, which recognizes public organizations who have used fleet technology to improve quality of life in cities, counties, states, and schools.

The division provides waste collection, recycling, composting, and tree trimming services to over 125,000 residents across 117 square miles. Athens-Clarke County made great strides to efficiently serve the public by transforming their collections operations in a number of ways.

They saved over 12,400 pieces of paper, improved billing accuracy, and reduced staff hours by using the Samsara Driver App to digitize paperwork, like route sheets, violation forms, and more. Athens-Clarke County also improved the safety of their fleet, coaching drivers with route playbacks and feedback from driver scorecards.

They saw a 50% decrease in harsh events, and a reduction in the frequency of unsafe turnarounds. Furthermore, tracking route performance allowed the county to expand their service area while achieving a 58% improvement in fuel efficiency.

“Technology is instrumental in managing our fleet,” said Suki Janssen, department director. “The solid waste/sanitation industry is in the top five most dangerous jobs in the US; if for no other reason, technology can improve driving habits and in turn create a safer environment for your team.  I can’t think of anything more important than the safety of your staff and community.”

Athens-Clarke County epitomizes public sector innovation and excellence by providing essential services to their community and demonstrating accountability to county leaders and taxpayers.

Korey Jones, collections administrator, said, “Efficiency means money. Sanitation departments have to be wise stewards of taxpayer dollars. Technology can improve the efficiency of routes, improve fleet performance, track maintenance, prevent redundancy, magnify unsafe drivers that need remediation, and so much more.” 

Other finalists for the award included MBTA and the City of Auburn.

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