Telematics systems help to provide important improvements for fleets in a variety of different areas. These include planning, maintenance and fuel efficiency, but telematics can also make a significant difference when it comes to driver safety, too.
There are several ways in which in-car telematics can help keep your fleet drivers safe, from simplifying their journeys to highlighting potentially dangerous driving behaviour. Read on to find out more about why you should incorporate telematics to keep your drivers safe on the roads.
Limiting time spent on the road
Less time on the road means a smaller risk of road accidents for fleet drivers. With that in mind, it’s important to limit any unnecessary trips or cut down on travel distances where possible.
One of the biggest safety risks when drivers don’t get enough time off the roads is drowsiness, also known as driver fatigue. According to road safety charity Brake, it's estimated that as many as 1 in 5 crashes on the roads are related to fatigue.
Drowsiness is more than falling asleep at the wheel, it can impair judgement, divert a driver's attention from the road and slow reaction times for steering and braking. What’s more, around 40% of fatigue-related crashes involve commercial vehicles, which means fleet managers have a responsibility to ensure their drivers get enough rest between journeys.
Collecting data from telematics means you can locate your vehicles at any time and get an accurate analysis of their movements. This allows you to optimise the allocation of fleet resources so that time spent on the road is reduced.
Assistance in the event of an accident
Unfortunately, road traffic accidents can happen at any time, even to experienced motorists in the best possible driving conditions. When collisions do take place, telematics can play a vital role when it comes to planning the next steps.
A good telematics system can provide fleet managers with alerts and an exact GPS location in the event of an accident, allowing them to make effective contingency plans and, in severe cases, contact emergency services as quickly as possible.
Telematics can also deliver real-time notifications detailing vital insurance information such as speed at the time of the collision and the severity of damage. This will help to minimise liability disputes, thus keeping insurance costs down.
Identifying dangerous parts of the road
Driver safety doesn’t just relate to human behaviour. The road conditions also play a part in work-related vehicle accidents, which is why it’s important to use a telematics system that analyses any changes to the roads on drivers’ routes and make sure they’re aware of any dangerous sections in their journey.
Once these areas are identified, you can use the data provided by telematics for effective route planning to modify journeys where necessary.
Highlighting ‘risky’ behaviour
Fleet managers have a duty of care to ensure that their drivers remain safe on the roads, and telematics data offers them unprecedented levels of insight into how drivers behave behind the wheel. In the event of risky driver behaviour (such as excessive speeding, harsh braking, tailgating or rough cornering), telematics can give fleet managers real-time insight into risky driver behaviour, allowing them to deal with the problem in a way that suits their business.
Fleet managers can use the data telematics provides to develop responses to any driver safety issues that occur. For instance, if a driver is consistently engaging in risky behaviour on the road, managers can create training programmes geared towards that individual driver’s needs.
With telematics, you can also examine driver behaviour in the aggregate, across your whole workforce. If several drivers are showing the same types of dangerous behaviour when driving, it could indicate a need for further training to establish a better understanding throughout the company.
Incorporating telematics insights into driver safety policies
Having a written safety policy is important for any company, and making it clear what is expected of drivers is essential. Data collected by telematics systems can be used to highlight specific areas of concern that should be addressed within a driver safety policy.
It’s also important that your drivers clearly know how and when the data collected from their vehicles will be used, as well as the consequences of any breaches of the safety policy.
Download our free telematics guide
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