If you’re expecting a visit from Santa this year, GPS tracking might help you know exactly when he’s coming. Of course we expect him to land at midnight, but just in case he’s running a little behind schedule (you know, some of those elves can be a little slow), we’re hoping he’ll keep a tracker on his sleigh for the night. Of course, he may want to keep his exact whereabouts a secret, and that’s Santa’s prerogative. But he did let GPS tracking tell some folks when he was coming to spread some early Christmas cheer this year.

Santa Claus joined the Leesburg Volunteer Fire Company for a week earlier in December, the 5th through the 12th, as part of 22-year-old tradition. Each evening, they toured the streets of Leesburg, Virginia visiting a different area each night so that everyone could have a chance to see the top celebrity of the season.

Along the way, his sleigh – which looks remarkably like a fire truck – stopped at “Santa Stops,” where crowds could gather to wave. Reports say temperatures were bitterly cold – at least, those big tough fireman thought so – but compared to the North Pole climate, Santa probably thought it was quite tropical. But the locals didn’t want to wait too long in the cold and give their kids bad memories associated with Santa, so the fire department made it easier.

First, they had maps and a broadly estimated schedule on their website so people could see where Santa would be driving this year and when he might arrive. But even that couldn’t be entirely accurate and couldn’t account for any changes, such as emergency calls or bad weather. So they added something new this year – GPS tracking, updated regularly on Twitter so fans could follow Santa’s movements throughout each evening.

The GPS works by putting a device on the fire truck – I mean, sleigh – so that satellites could read signals from the device and coordinate that information with a map of Leesburg. Then all of that could be monitored by the fire department or GPS company and relayed to fans via the Internet. By all accounts, the whole event was a big hit and the new technology was a great success. We’re hoping Santa forgets to take the device off so that we can watch his departure from the North Pole and his flight around the globe on Christmas Eve.

Categories: GPS Fleet Tracking ,GPS Holiday ,GPS Tracking , GPS Tracking Devices
Tags: christmas , gps santa , santa , tracking santa