FONTANA, CA - The City of Fontana, Calif., recently completed installation of the FuelMaster AIM2 fuel management system, expected to reduce overtime staffing costs, use of higher-priced offsite fueling services, and system downtime compared to its previous system.

The City had been using fuel management software since the mid-1990s, but began looking for a different system due to unreliability and lack of product support for the system, according to Butch Smith, fleet services supervisor for the City. "Overtime staffing expenses for after-hour downtime became a common occurrence," Smith added.

Smith expects the AIM2 system will produce reduced downtime as well as better support. Because its contracted maintenance vendor is a distributor and authorized repair station for FuelMaster, the City has already seen support response time decrease to 40 minutes (from three to five days previously).

Initially, a total of 68 AIM2 devices have been installed in City vehicles, primarily in police patrol units and emergency response Public Works vehicles.  The remainder of the City's 431 fleet vehicles require coded fuel keys for fueling purposes.

"By the early part of 2012, it is our plan to have our entire 162 vehicle Public Safety fleet completely equipped with AIM2 devices -- and the remainder of the City fleet within the next two years. We will also be installing the ingress/egress systems beginning with our Public Works yard gates followed by our Police parking complex this fiscal [year]," Smith said.

The AIM2 transponder units relay vehicle information such as current mileage, idle time, engine run time, as well as engine and emission diagnostics, each time the fueling nozzle is inserted. The electronic control unit (ECU) information will allow fleet to more accurately determine a vehicle's use for maintenance purposes as well as emissions monitoring, Smith said. Previously, vehicle replacement and maintenance schedules were based on odometer readings.

"Monitoring engine performance can also save money, helping us to keep our vehicles fuel efficient and less polluting," Smith said.