Improve Driver Safety With Telematics
Many fleet managers put off implementing telematics to improve driver safety because they fear they will become aware of something that until now they did not have to subsequently manage. If you are in this situation ask yourself, what do you think is riskier? Not knowing if safety training is needed for your drivers OR knowing that there are drivers who require safety training and focusing attention on how to help them by developing a policy and various procedures?
To put this simply, the cost of not knowing far outweighs the cost of measuring and managing safety using an affordable telematics solution. Plus, not only will telematics help with driver safety, it will also help save money on fuel, allow for better route management, maintenance reminders and more.
If protecting your employees isn’t incentive enough, the courts are awarding increasingly large punitive settlements against companies that do not apply what is considered to be predominantly accessible technology.
In 2012, the court awarded $22 million to a plaintiff where the fleet failed to reinforce its non-use of cell phone policy. The court found the fleet at fault for failing to enforce a common and practical cell phone policy for improving driver safety. In New York State, backup camera use by trucks was mandated after a fatality, in addition to the use of external alarms of reversing trucks in Illinois. Not having equipment installed costs companies far more than the cost of the technology itself. The same case can be made for not applying practical and common tools to monitor and enforce safe driving. It is better to measure – in order to understand, develop a policy, and reinforce that policy than it is to ignore the risk of unsafe drivers in the first place.
With a massive payback by managing safety, fuel, and maintenance, it is surprising that not every fleet is already fully equipped with telematics. So the question becomes: will a court find that telematics technology is ubiquitous enough with 40% of fleets installed in North America, to find a fleet negligent if it is not measuring and ultimately managing safe driving?