STRIPES tests new GPS tracking capabilities

Thursday, April 15, 2010 | 12:01 a.m. CDT; updated 7:56 a.m. CDT, Thursday, April 15, 2010

COLUMBIA — STRIPES, a student volunteer organization, is testing a new GPS tracking system that, according to spokesman Andrew Worrall, will help the organization run more efficiently.

STRIPES provides free rides to MU students on Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings. The drivers are supplied with cell phones before they pick up riders, and with the Comet Tracker, the new system, the dispatcher can track each STRIPES car through the driver's cell phone.

Worrall said they had been looking into adding this system for about a year and called it a "big step" for the organization.

"From a risk-management point of view ... it's a necessity," he said, citing increased safety and accountability for the drivers and patrons.

STRIPES is currently negotiating the cost of the GPS tracking system with Sprint, the organization's cell phone provider. Worrall said they're testing the system for 30 days and will decide in May if the organization will permanently add the feature.

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