The CarChip Program

April 07, 2011

Amy Lanham
Assistant Director for Sport Clubs & Youth Activities
University of Nebraska-Lincoln

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln Transportation Services department implemented the CarChip program in the Fall of 2005. The CarChip is a small device that can be attached to any vehicle, and can monitor functions like vehicle speed and braking activity (as well as other mechanical functions). The fleet dispatcher assigns a data recorder (CarChip) to a vehicle, attaches the device and then upon the vehicle’s return, pulls the recorder and downloads a variety of details regarding the vehicle while it has been out in the field.

For Sport Clubs, the key features that have proven most important for staff has been the ability to review reports that clearly show the speed the vehicle was traveling throughout the trip and break down the mph into zones. In addition, the data shows when a vehicle was started and in turn was shut off.

UNL requires that all large passenger vans do not exceed 65 mph. When the report is printed, it is very easy to determine if the vehicle was driven over this speed and the duration of time it spent above 65 mph. The report also details the maximum speed and the average speed of the trip.

The CarChip program has resulted in an increase in disciplinary hearings, with some clubs losing their vehicle-use privileges and certain drivers being suspended from future use. However, from a transportation safety perspective, it allows sport club to monitor what is going on physically during the trip when staff is not present. A big deal!

Each data recorder costs around $100 and is easily installed. For more details on the CarChip program, go to or contact Davis Instruments at 510-732-9229

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