Data is the key to fleet safety

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Michael Roberts | CEO | KeyTec | mail me


Data and analytics are important sources of information to track any fleet. Modern fleet management solutions can help fleet owners stay informed about the condition of their fleet. They can also now make informed decisions through accurate reporting and ultimately, reduce unnecessary costs by eliminating human errors.

With fleet safety analytics in place, fleet operators can be empowered to take business decisions backed by data. It can also help them identify gaps in safety within the fleet and the personnel involved in handling the fleet, enabling them to make way for new safety solutions and training programs.

The power of data

Fleet safety analytics is a segment of the fleet management ecosystem that utilises the power of data to provide helpful insights into everything related to your fleet, keeping in mind all the safety considerations.

There are many other parts in this ecosystem that help in collection of data from the vehicle, for example a vehicle tracking device, AI-enabled sensors, dashboard cameras, vehicle-to-vehicle communication, etc. With the help of fleet management systems, data about the entire fleet is gathered, from vehicle health, to fuel utility, to trip details, to location tracking, to driver and vehicle performance.

This data is then converted into important information in the form of trends and ‘analytics’ by an analytics platform. Observing these trends to enhance safety protocols of the fleet is what constitutes fleet safety analytics.

In essence, fleet safety analytics influences a fleet manager’s decisions related to the security of the fleet, whether it is hiring qualified personnel to drive the vehicle, or contemplating whether a vehicle needs to be replaced based on its health, or creating driver coaching modules on the basis of the drivers’ performance.

We explore the concept of fleet safety analytics, different types of fleet safety technologies and the security strategies that you can adopt with the help of fleet safety analytics.

The value of data

In a nutshell, fleet safety analytics refer to the diagnostic data collected from the vehicles in a fleet, and using it to extract insights into improving the fleet’s safety and avoiding security breaches in the future.

The word ‘data’ may seem mountainous and, as a result, daunting, but it is actually the heart and soul of technology as we know it. Data in itself may not mean much, but when it is parsed through the correct platforms, it yields important information. This is what fleet safety analytics does.

It is critical for a fleet manager to safeguard their assets, including their driving crew and their fleet. Simply said, any kind of movement always entails danger. The most serious hazards – and the most expensive – are traffic accidents, cargo damage, bogus claims, vehicle repairs, and drivers’ health. In a given year, 20% of the vehicles in a trucking business’s fleet will be involved in a car accident.

For fleets and trucking companies, improving safety and performance is a must. Technology plays an essential role in reducing the risks associated with driving. The most important role is played by video telematics combined with GPS tracking.

Fleet safety policy

To set clear and consistent expectations of drivers, it is critical to explain a codified fleet safety policy. Senior management must be vocal in their support for fleet safety protocols. Policies should be revised on a regular basis and followed without exception.

Managing high-risk personnel

It is not enough to have a fleet safety policy; you also need to continuously implement it and hold drivers accountable.

Most fleets have introduced safety training programmes and technology, such as in-vehicle cameras for driver coaching, to change risky driving behaviours. In a high-turnover situation where driving is not the primary responsibility, keeping safety in mind is a major difficulty.

Distracted drivers

The most major and continuous risk that fleet managers must avoid is distracted driving. Fatigued driving is also linked to distracted driving.

Today’s field workers are being pressured to accomplish more with less, which contributes to driver fatigue. To reduce in-vehicle distractions, fleet managers must design and enforce policies as well as study the use of technology.

The main fact is that a vehicle has far too many technologies that can cause driver distraction. Some fear we are losing the war against driver distraction due to the ease with which we can make and receive calls and texts via mobile phones.

Budgeting constraints

While management frequently speaks a great deal about the importance of fleet safety programmes, convincing them to invest money is a different story. Due to economic constraints, many fleets are unable to afford training programmes or purchase optional safety equipment packages when acquiring new vehicles.

Data analytics

The way employees operate a vehicle affects how safe they are on the road. You can have a direct impact on driver safety if you can change driving behaviour.

Telematics monitors adherence to fleet safety regulations and flags high-risk drivers. Furthermore, telematics technology is still evolving. For example, to boost security and safety, fleets are evaluating bi-directional video systems incorporating artificial intelligence.

Even with telematics devices installed, drivers continue to do things they should not, but these high-risk drivers can now be detected and transgressions can be reported.

Saving on costs

Operational costs of any business can be drastically reduced with the help of fleet tracking and analytics.

For example, a fleet safety analytics dashboard can represent the amount of time a vehicle in a fleet spends unnecessarily idling, which can lead to excessive usage of fuel and can take the fuel costs beyond budget.

By identifying idling instances, fleet operators can communicate with the driver to clamp down on unnecessary idling and reduce costs.

The solution

Advanced fleet management solutions like LocoNav can help fleet owners manage the company’s assets, fuel and employees. It will save them money by maximising the efficiency of their equipment, thereby increasing the productivity of their fleet.


 



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