Not long ago, the transport industry has been hesitant to adopt smart technologies in their essential and general activities. However, they soon realized the impact of modern technologies in the practice of management and conduct of business. Fleet managers and drivers altogether are striving to improve safety and productivity.
Starting from this point, we cannot ignore the fact that technologies such as trailer tracking, anti-theft technology, drivers’ scorecards and collision mitigation technologies have brought a revolution to trucking and feel management. Here are the most common technologies that will completely change and develop your business to greater heights.
What was commonly known as a driver “score carding” or “gamification” actually goes back to the later 2000s when fleet management systems were collecting telematics details to help show where trucks were facing problems in their operation. Gamification in trucking takes training and adds an element of competition to spark behaviour changes. For instance, in training circles, we can find a lot of buzz about gamification. How does it work? Gamification takes something that isn’t actually a game – for example. Safe driving techniques – and adding an element of competition to stimulate this behaviour change.
The telematics information helped identify the infamous and somewhat clichés of bad driving behaviours like acceleration and hard braking. By doing so, they could indicate careless driving that can lead to collisions and also greater wear and tear on the truck, causing huge maintenance costs.
In short, bad driving behaviour can add extra fuel costs and lead to more frequent accidents and other expensive events, but fleets can use gamification or score carding to cut down on these expenditures. Driver coaching or score carding is also working together with truck video systems as they can easily identify and analyse positive driving behaviours based on camera recognition technology.
In-cab camera systems have been around for some years, and now they established themselves as the familiar dash-cam. The best part about these technologies is that they are getting better and better in terms of quality with time.
Trucking camera systems have developed along with the evolution of the digital camera, which have seen significant improvement in terms of light quality, high-definition image capture, and excellent storage capacity while getting even more suitable in size. Traffic Angel, a camera system supplier with an experience of 15 years in the industry, says that the main reason why fleets implement these systems in their trucks is to defend both the fleet and the driver in case of collision of eventual phoney insurance lawsuits. Why? Knowing that fleets can make a nice and easy target, those looking for a payday can either try to run into a truck or file a false lawsuit.
Another great danger to truck out on the American roadways is even more prevalent, namely the public perception. A study from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration showed that when a passenger vehicle and a heavy truck collide, the passengers’ car driver has a convincing majority of 70% to be responsible for the accident. Meanwhile, as onlookers and the public see the crush, they always tend to assume that it’s the huge truck’s fault.
So, because trucking companies and fleets are more likely to end up paying when they’re dragged to the court, the forward-facing camera can save these companies both money and time as they can easily show the truth of the matter.
As studies have shown, heavy trucks are overrepresented in collision and fatalities. One recent study of the Federal Carrier Safety Administration stated that buses and heavy trucks accounted for 4% registered vehicles and 9% of total miles driven but were engaged in 13% of accidents and 13% of total traffic fatalities. The agency even speculated that it’s mostly due to their larger mass and size, which can easily damage smaller vehicles. Although crash data analyses show that it’s the passenger vehicle divers’ fault most often when a truck and small vehicle collide, any kind of truck collision leads to costly insurance lawsuits and claims.
And because it’s in the interest of fleets to preserve profitability and reduce collision to an absolute minimum, they start relying on advanced collision mitigation systems. These systems incorporate more sensing technology to monitor crashes of all kinds and take necessary emergency procedures to avoid them. Collision mitigation technology is also reducing the number of false positives which the first such product used to offer a few years ago. Given the numerous benefits, they provide these smart technologies are swiftly becoming standard on many new models of trucks and can be easily incorporated into older trucks as well.
And, because collision mitigation technology is finding a new way to monitor more of the truck performance, as well as the truck’s speed and control in a different direction, it also offers the ability to take independent emergency action when needed.
As a part of the Food Safety Modernization Act, this technology has become mandatory for fleets involved in transporting human and animal food. What does this imply? As the act requires, the fleet has to properly refrigerate, maintain hygiene between loads to prevent contamination and protect the food during transportation.
For instance, in their contracts with their carriers, shippers have to be able to demonstrate they do comply with rules and provide necessary documentation that a truck responsible for transporting milk – maintains the correct temperatures to accommodate that kind of food. So, temperature-tracking technology may become an essential prerequisite for fleets who want to continue doing business. Moreover, being able to show proper documentation and temperature tracking could also help in the event that a truck has to be inspected. Thus, it never hurts to demonstrate that you are doing things in the right way.
In the modern-day world, technology is by far making a great impact on transportation. With all the above revolutionizing developments in fleet management trucking safety, you can truly stand a chance to grow your business and better heights.