Narcos Probably Had the Best Route Optimization Without Any Technology

By Dhruvil Sanghvi

It’s so irritating yet irresistible when you open your Facebook, come across the Narcos commercial sponsored by Netflix, watch the first episode and then end up watching the entire season on a lazy weekend. For Netflix this time, it is Narcos everywhere. The latest non-fiction series by Netflix Originals, which has stormed the internet globally, Narcos accurately depicts the rise and fall of Medellin drug cartel across first two seasons which revolve around the drug lord Pablo Escobar and the United States Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) trying to nab him down.

The gritty drama shows the protagonist, a self-proclaimed kingpin, Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar and his cartel, infiltrating the borders of US with different far-reaching route extensions.

A noticeable fact about these cartels is the level of route optimizations they did to accurately infiltrate the US and Mexican borders without getting noticed. A big challenge it is for sure, no GPS, no technology as such which would have helped them succeed. Think about it, you get a slip with the shortest address, that too coded, and you have to accurately deliver it within a set timeframe, on-stake is your life. Sounds thrilling, doesn’t it?

use of route optimization in Narcos

Highlights From The Drug Lord Pablo Escobar

If not taken in the wrong context, Pablo Escobar was by far the best when it came to Logistics management. We have like a plethora of technologies for real-time tracking, Geo-coding/fencing and route planning and still feel we don’t have enough and need more research to enhance the existing solutions. Think about it this way, one’s life is at stake just for delivering something on time, and the delivery location tracking and route planning is done on basic instincts, it’s classic do or die situation.
This was the case back then, where these cartel’s accomplished everything based knowledge, basic instincts, and luck. The technology was no-where in the picture, a basic satellite phone was the only source of connection, still, they managed to identify and smuggle their products from Columbia to Mexico and then to US, using different routes and depending on the requirements. Being part of the logi-tech fraternity, we feel that was awesome.

Just For Fun, Let’s Evaluate the Technologies Pablo Escobar Would Have Procured if He Were to Operate in Current Era.

Listing down below, the pain areas of Pablo’s distribution and logistics channels and the technologies that would cater to those specific problem areas!
Problem: Package theft or misplacement:

Solution: This is probably a very common yet highly perilous problem for this sector. Integrating RFID chips in every package which can be then tracked on real-time remotely, is the best solution.
Problem: Heavy traffic conditions
Solution: Traffic=Delay & Delay=Death, Hence an automated route planning and optimization enabled by predictive analysis will surely save some lives if not all.
Problem: Planning routes for inter-city and intra-city movements
Solution: Everything starts from inter-city and then converts to intra-city, end-to-end logistics management solution is a must for granular visibility.
Problem: Tracking the drivers and their movements
Solution: Drivers play a critically important role when logistics is into picture. It is extremely important to track the drivers and their complete movements. This can be achieved with an App based real-time tracking solution
Problem: Tracking and optimizing all the delivery boys
Solution: Delivery boys are the soul of this industry. Hence, the last mile delivery system needs to be accurate with the best ETA. Any discrepancy and this will surely turn into the last mile of his life.
Problem: Delay mapping and alert
Solution: Many different reasons can lead to delays and delays can prove fatal. Accurately mapping such delays can be done through massive geo-fencing and real-time alerts to check the total delay and detention time.
Problem: Abandon mission alerts
Solution: Alerts should be in real-time when there is mission abandonment. It can be managed with a comprehensive central notification dashboard.
Problem: Police checkpost alert
Solution: Highly important due to the nature of this industry ;), Geo-fencing all the suspected routes with special parameters will provide real-time visibility on police checkposts.
Problem: Real-time shipment tracking
Solution: Once the Shipment/packages leaves the secret warehouse, it can be tracked till it reaches the end party with the end party confirming the receipt of the deliver, this should help in enhancing the network.
Problem: Real-time alerts and notifications with special SOS alerts
Solution: SOS alerts, how can we miss this part, considering the risks involved in this line of business, special real-time SOS alerts — like package caught alert, DEA raid alerts, Gang showdown alert etc, will prove to be extremely crucial.
Disclaimer: The intent of this article is to spread information about the technologies and add humor while doing it. We strictly condemn such unlawful and illegal activities and do not wish to promote or associate ourselves with any such activities whatsoever.
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