Usually, technology and driving shouldn’t be mixed, notes Mark Chertkow, Managing Director at Graphic Image Technologies. Devices like mobile phones, GPS navigators – and even the radio – can take a drivers’ eyes off the road, which has the potential to be fatal.
Distracted driving accounts for approximately 25% of all vehicle crash fatalities and all it takes is seconds of distraction to cause an accident. Driver behaviour while on the road is usually beyond the control of logistics and fleet managers, with the presence of technology inside the truck cabin only contributing to driver distraction. That is, until today.
Major developments in cloud and Artificial Intelligence (AI) have allowed dashcam technology to evolve into the foundation of truly functional fleet management tool that offers more control over every vehicle and every driver, with complete visibility into vehicle treatment, including the ability to keep the drivers’ eyes on the road at all times.
Eyes on fleet management
Today’s dashcams are intelligent and connected, transforming vehicles into video-connected fleets. Modern dashcams have a choice in connectivity – 3G, 4G and Wi-Fi – which makes them capable of streaming video with less than one-second latency. Eyes are provided by front and driver-facing integrated full HD cameras, and smart sensors bring intelligence by automatically registering potentially dangerous events, such as sudden stops, sharp acceleration, harsh turns and even detecting when the driver takes his eyes off the road.
AI provides the element of control that fleet managers crave, providing performance reporting and behaviour analysis into every driver. This allows fleet managers to achieve new levels of safety and efficiency in order to truly optimise their fleet performance.
Capturing a clear view of the road and the truck interior both day and night, these connected devices automatically upload a 10-second video clip of every trigger event to be stored in the cloud, prompting an email notification that allows fleet managers the ability to respond in real-time.
Unlike conventional video driver monitoring technology, distracted driver alerts take place in real time in response to the driver’s eyes leaving the road and not in response to erratic vehicle behaviour – by which time it’s usually too late to avoid an accident.
Complete visibility into every driver, every vehicle
For logistics managers, today’s smart dash cam solutions offer full GPS tracking in real time, to deliver total transparency into each vehicle’s trip with deep contextual information such as point-by-point location information, time, and travelling speed, all of which make it simple to locate footage relating to a specific event to effectively manage accident investigations, insurance claims, and driver training.
When it comes to post-event investigation, no longer will safety officers have to trawl through reams of footage to isolate the incident. A central dashboard that is web-accessible through any device, provides the means to manage all footage with all events logged by description, date, time and type.
An extra set of eyes on the road
Given all this intelligent functionality, logistics companies will find modern cloud-based dash cam solutions a welcome addition to the team, with low upfront hardware costs, affordable annual subscription fees and easy scalability. Fleet managers will finally be able to proactively monitor their vehicles and drivers, with the ability to respond faster to incidents and gain complete visibility into driver behaviour and vehicle treatment.