Sending out vehicles on roads without any supervision is very stressful and risky. This is why most fleets use a fleet management system for their drivers’ performance optimisation and monitoring. With this system, managers get to control their fleets remotely. But have you ever wondered how this process can become even more advanced? With advancements in technology, business models are bound to change. Video telematics solution is this step towards change for all fleet businesses.
You must be curious about what exactly is a video telematics solution, right? Let us form an understanding with this blog.
What is Video Telematics Solution?
Traditionally, fleet management software sends textual alerts and information to managers. They are then required to work on such information provided to them. But this comes with its own set of limitations. Lack of evidence is the biggest problem that can occur. Alerts can be refuted as software’s fault.
Video telematics is the system that provides visual information to managers regarding their fleet. But instead of it being in textual form, it sends pictures and videos as evidence. This information can be about things like driver activities, consignment safety and so on. Contextualising driver behaviour reports happens through this system.
Managers can track activities taking place not just inside, but also around vehicles through cameras and sensors. This system provides an additional layer of security for fleets.
How Does Video Telematics Work?
Video telematics uses dashcams to track drivers and their activities on road. Dashcams collect video pieces of evidence upon an event triggering.
Earlier, dash cams were only for viewing and recording footage from the vehicle. But now fleets use AI-powered smart dash cams for their functions. These dash cams are not just for supervision, but can also work as sensors for a vehicle.
They can calculate vehicle vicinity with other objects. Artificial intelligence has advanced enough to study drivers’ actions and detect dangerous acts. These include yawning, distracted driving, and smoking.
After this detection, the system collects visual evidence and sends them to managers. With this, managers are prompted to execute preventive measures to ensure fleet safety.
Video telematics consists of two parts- Driver Monitoring System (DMS) and Advanced driver assistance system (ADAS). Let us learn how each of them functions.
Driver Monitoring System (DMS)
It is important to optimise fleet drivers as they ultimately control the ones in control of your fleet vehicles. Driver behaviour solution of a fleet management system ensures a vehicle is being driven properly on road.
But DMS ups the game and allows you to also make sure that drivers are not distracted as they control vehicles. This system allows you to set custom events and provides video evidence upon triggering these events. Commonly added events include-
Yawning is an indicator that the driver behind wheels is not completely attentive to the road. This is why this alert is very important. It is not safe to drive a vehicle without full concentration. A tired driver will not be capable of making the best decisions on road. Thus, this system saves any calamity from happening beforehand.
A sleeping driver behind wheels is an accident waiting to happen. But it is not shocking that drivers get tired after driving for so long. Dispatching an alert occurs if there is a drowsy driver on road. Managers can advise him to pull over and rest before continuing.
Smoking distracts drivers from the road. Distracted driving can be severely dangerous. It can not only endanger lives but also damage vehicles. This is why the system registers this event to alert managers.
- Camera Blocking
Camera blocking can hinder the entire driver monitoring process. If cameras cannot detect any event taking place then they cannot alert managers about dangerous situations. This is why any time a camera loses its driver’s sight due to some object obstructing its way, managers get to know.
When a driver is on road, they are responsible for high-value consignments and expensive vehicles. Not paying attention while at work can cause fatal accidents. Mobile phones are the top reason for distracted driving. The system detects such acts and alerts managers immediately.
- Driver Absence
This event is triggered when cameras detect some other person driving their vehicle in place of the designated driver. Drivers are chosen for tasks after much consideration and handing them over to some other person is unsafe. It also wastes time managers spent on task assigning after studying reports.
Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS)
For complete optimisation, it is important to also be mindful of the activities taking place around a vehicle. This is where ADAS comes into play. It uses cameras to track activities around a vehicle. These activities can be due to a driver’s actions or some other vehicle on road.
There are no fixed events that form a part of ADAS and businesses can integrate the ones most suitable to them. Some commonly added events are-
- Forward Collision
For this event, the system integrates collision sensors and cameras with ADAS. They start beeping whenever vehicles come near another vehicle or any other object. This alerts drivers to take preventive precautions. An alert is also sent out to managers whenever these sensors detect danger.
- Signal Violation
Signal violation is a major cause of accidents. It is very hard to judge and control vehicles based on traffic from the end that has a green signal. This event alerts the managers about any driver not abiding by the traffic signals.
- Lane Switch
Abruptly changing lanes on road can lead to collisions. It does not give drivers driving on road time to navigate their vehicles. Changing lanes without using direction indicators can cause other vehicles in motion to collide with you. This is why this event is very important as it ensures vehicle safety and also keeps drivers safe.
Overspeeding is very harmful to a vehicle’s engine. It can not only pressurise into consuming more fuel than necessary but also wears down its tires. It is very difficult to control overspeeding vehicles and thus also threatens drivers’ safety. Sensors can detect overspeeding instances and provide evidence to managers.
Why Invest in Video Telematics System?
Video telematics solution is beneficial for businesses in many ways. Some of them are:
- Enhanced Safety
Vehicles are prone to accidents while travelling on road. This can cause heavy losses for businesses because unethical driving not only damages vehicles but also endangers consignments. This is why video telematics proves to be a necessity in fleet optimisation.
Distracted driving has caused almost 280,000 yearly injuries in the U.S alone. Camera installation can help reduce this high rate. Drivers monitoring through these cameras will make them consciously adopt safer driving practices on road.
Alerts like forward collisions and signal violations included in ADAS also optimise the driving process. Driving closely to other vehicles on road leaves leaving no space for vehicles to stop in case of emergency braking is dangerous. It can cause accidents and also slows down vehicles, demanding constant harsh braking. Ignoring street lights can also become a reason for collisions.
- Minimised Costs
Road accidents can damage vehicles and in some cases can leave the vehicle useless for further use. This is an additional cost for businesses that can be easily avoided. Also, rash driving habits can cause vehicles to wear down way faster than normal. This is why video telematics integration in the fleet management system is very important.
Insurance companies reduce their premium costs for vehicles with a video telematics solution. This is because these vehicles are less likely to get into any kind of accident. Thus, insurance companies will not have to spend too much on claims.
Video telematics also helps businesses cut their unnecessary expenditure on tickets and fines. Improved driver behaviour leads to a better rule-abiding form of driving and fewer altercations with the system.
- Insightful Decision Making
Cameras installed on vehicles record all instances of misconduct on roads. They are then stored in the system so that managers can study them whenever required.
With this knowledge, it is easier to judge which drivers prioritise safety during task completions. Incentivising drivers who perform well is easier using this process. It is also easier to decide which drivers need training on road safety with recorded information.
For example, driver A has regular distracted driving alerts under his name. On the other hand, driver B has a cleaner record. Managers assigning tasks have received a fragile consignment that needs transportation. Which driver do you think is more likely to get this task? Driver B of course, because he will transport the consignment with more care than driver A.
- Less Vehicle Maintenance
A reduction in instances of overspeeding, signal violation, and idling means a reduction in vehicle depreciation as well. This is because drivers apply caution to their driving style when they are aware of the constant supervision. Carefully driven vehicles break down way less than average.
Thus, these vehicles do not require any other servicing procedure except their regular check-ups. Servicing and maintenance feature of a fleet management system helps schedule check-up services. Managers will get alerted about servicing procedures days before their due date.
- Real-time Alerts
With ADAS, some events for alerts are intuitive. For example, collision sensors not only alert drivers but also warn drivers about any potential accidents. Alerting drivers immediately is important and is only possible if the software tracks vehicles in real-time.
- Improved Driver Behaviour
With an alert system in action, drivers are more aware of their surroundings. This means they make efforts to adopt better practices on road. Drivers play the most important part in any fleet. If they choose to make better decisions on road, then optimisation of entire fleets is simplified.
Better driver behaviour has many benefits. It proves to be profitable for fleets to have responsible people taking care of vehicles. It also keeps drivers safe while they complete tasks on road.
- Easier Insurance Claims
Video telematics solution collects physical evidence for all events. In cases of accidents for which your drivers are not at fault, this form of visual evidence can vouch for you. Fleet managers will not have to pay as much for these claims as compared to normal unrecorded accidents.
- Increased Profits
Businesses are able to cut down on several expenses by using video telematics. These costs include the repair of vehicles and fuel costs. With reduced expenditure, profits increase.
DMS and ADS make drivers more efficient, therefore, making extra profits. Also, the time spent on vehicle maintenance can instead be used to complete tasks, increasing profits for businesses. The system reduces vehicle downtime, making the fleet more productive. Better task completion means raised revenue.
- Fuel Efficiency
Bad driving is one of the leading cause of fuel wastage in any fleet. But with DMS, drivers stay conscious of their habits. Overspeeding can pressurise engines to run faster than optimal, thus consuming more fuel. But with a reduction in overspeeding, vehicles run at an optimal state. Optimising all your vehicles will reduce your fleet’s overall fuel consumption.
Vehicles in downtime can not only not perform, but also pressures other vehicles to overwork which leads to wear and tear. With video telematics, this downtime is reduced which helps the fleet complete tasks faster. This saved time can then be used for other activities.
A fleet management system also automates the process of managing a fleet. This saves managers their time which was earlier wasted trying to track their vehicles. Managers can now use this time for other tasks while simultaneously monitoring their fleet.
It’s very fascinating to trace the history and see just how far technology has come. Video telematics is a modern-day solution to not only optimise your fleet’s working but also keep your drivers safe.
It is believed that businesses not evolving along with the ever-growing technology won’t be able to sustain themselves in their industry. In a competitive economy, customers demand the best services.