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Map software

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Sno, Nov 15, 2002.

  1. Sno

    Sno Senior Member
    Messages: 320

    Any one use a map software to map out your customers before hand? I'd like to quickly figure the optimum path before each snow storm and have it easily changable due to amounts of snow and snow triggers.

    Anyone have or tried anything like that?

    If so, what is best?
     
  2. Lawn Lad

    Lawn Lad Senior Member
    Messages: 407

    I think the problem with mapping software is that it simply plots point a to b. Where you'll know which properties are higher priority during a day time snow storm. As well, you'll know local traffic patterns and work to avoid bad intersections with the flow or direction of your route. You might change around things simply because of the side of a street that an account is on. Night time might not make a difference but during the day it might be tough to get to from the direction you're coming. How would a software app be able to put that kind of "thought" into your route. I guess I wouldn't want to trust a computer.
     
  3. 4 Saisons

    4 Saisons Senior Member
    Messages: 260

    microsoft street & trips.

    The software can give you the shortest or quickess route, you can also priorize some account by changing the order of your list.

    you can also have a different route if it's 2 or 6 inches of snow.
     
  4. Sno

    Sno Senior Member
    Messages: 320

    I was looking at the Microsoft software but it was unclear if you could do more than point to point. It looks like you can. Have you tried using it for that?

    I know last year, durring a two day snow I did some needless zig zaging in town trying to remember priorities, triggers and quickest routes. I did mess up a couple times which cost me money in travel time and also missed a customer that was on a 4" trigger since we only had one snow last year with that amount of snow, forgot he existed.. :rolleyes:

    I'm sure it would pay for itself if it works for that.

    Your descriptions are exactly what I want to do, thanks.

    Now, has any one actually used the microsoft map? Could it be used for that?

    Thanks for the imput!
     
  5. 4 Saisons

    4 Saisons Senior Member
    Messages: 260

    yes I use it.

    It give you an estimate of your driving time and fuel needed, you can can also enter the time needed at each account, so you will know how long you need to do your route.
     
  6. Snoworks

    Snoworks Senior Member
    Messages: 466

    I have been doing this manually for years, writing down each property and listing directions to the next address. What a pain! I thought about using mapquest, but I could only get it to work from street to street. Microsoft streets and trip sounds like it should work, I think I will give it a shot too.

    I also thought about using GPS on a lab top and or pilot, but had similar problems when entering more than one address. Does anyone out there use a lab top or pilot to map out accounts?

    CGB
     
  7. 4 Saisons

    4 Saisons Senior Member
    Messages: 260

    you can add your street and trip map to a GPS, but i had never try it. don't have a GPS.
     
  8. NoStockBikes!!

    NoStockBikes!! Senior Member
    Messages: 215

    I led a shovel crew for my neighbor a couple winters ago, and he, uses a MS maps program, and prints a map of the "cluster" areas, and then draws a route with red marker over top of the street linesand marks the site with a number and the relevant info is listed on the bottom half of the page. It helps time efficiency between sites, and "priority" stuff just becomes a manual override so to speak. Get a nasty blizzard or somethign where it can't get finished in the overnight, and then we hit the prioriy places and finish up the rest as soon as we can.

    So I'd give them a thumbs up, not so much for the program's route planning, but for the ability to zoom a map to 5 square miles, print it and scribble all over it.
     
  9. Snoworks

    Snoworks Senior Member
    Messages: 466

    Anyone else out there ever used GPS to track snowplowing routes? I have looked into a few times, and still think it might work great. Up front cost is high, but potential office labor savings in one or two years could be substantial.

    CGB
     
  10. Snoworks

    Snoworks Senior Member
    Messages: 466

    I just purchased this software and I am kicking myself for not buying it sooner!!!! Awsome product.

    CGB
     
  11. Rooster

    Rooster Member
    from Kansas
    Messages: 650

    4 Saisons,

    Streets & Trips 2003 GREAT software, I bought it today.

    You can use a GPS with it also if you want to.

    Great detail!!!

    Thanks for the tip!

    Rick
     
  12. 4 Saisons

    4 Saisons Senior Member
    Messages: 260

    I'm glad to see you're happy with the software.
     
  13. 4 Saisons

    4 Saisons Senior Member
    Messages: 260

    I'm glad to see you're happy with the software.