April 6, 2009 9:40 AM, EDT

Old Dominion to Install PeopleNet’s Onboard Systems

Less-than-truckload carrier Old Dominion Freight Line said it will install PeopleNet’s onboard communications systems across its entire fleet of 5,100 trucks.

In a joint statement, PeopleNet and Old Dominion said the carrier will install the software firm’s systems “in local pickup-and-delivery operations for linehaul.”

The PeopleNet installation marks Old Dominion’s first foray into onboard communications for its linehaul fleet, although the Thomasville, N.C., carrier’s pickup-and-delivery drivers have used handheld computers on their routes for years.

In addition to PeopleNet’s on-board communications systems, Old Dominion said it plans to install PeopleNet’s electronic driver-log system, a geofencing application and a driver performance module.

Old Dominion began testing onboard systems in 2006, in conjunction with an electronic driver-log test it was conducting at the time.

“That test raised a question,” Barry Craver, Old Dominion’s director of freight processing applications, said in a statement announcing the deal. “If we’re going to install an onboard device, what else can it do for us?”

In the end, “our safety folks liked PeopleNet’s log program better than anyone else’s,” Barry said.

Ron Konezny, chief executive officer of Chaska, Minn.-based PeopleNet, said that the deal with Old Dominion marked “a new era for our two companies and even for the LTL sector as a whole.”

Old Dominion ranks No. 20 on the Transport Topics 100 list of the largest for-hire carriers in the United States and Canada.