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Matt Brett

How The Latest Dashcams Improve Driver Safety

Accidents involving your company’s trucks can be both tragic and costly. To prevent them, your company needs a comprehensive safety program to ensure drivers operate your vehicles as safely as possible. For the most part, however, safety still depends heavily on driver behavior.

To protect your drivers, others on the road, your equipment, and your company, you need to be able to monitor behavior and proactively mitigate against actions, both intentional and unintentional, that can have dire consequences.

Dashcams are the most effective tool in a telematics toolbox to ensure drivers are operating your vehicles safely. And with the latest generation of these dashcams, which can feature high-definition video and multiple views – including views of both the driver and road – it’s possible to send alerts (via your telematics data system) to drivers who may be speeding, veering out of their lane, or engaging in other unsafe behavior.

Unsafe Actions Can Now Be Predicted

What makes the latest generation of dashcams even more powerful is how they incorporate AI (artificial intelligence) technology to move beyond detecting unsafe behavior to predicting it.

Here’s an example of how it works: The camera detects when the driver has taken his eyes off the road, perhaps to look down at his cell phone. When the camera detects this action, either multiple times or for an extended period of time, it determines, using an algorithm, that this is a precursor to a dangerous event, such as the driver crossing the center line into oncoming traffic. An audible alert (a beep) is then triggered to prompt the driver to concentrate on the road.

Of course, the real magic here happens not because of the camera alone, but because the information captured by the camera is fed into the algorithm to both predict an event and prevent it from happening.

woman in hat and orange service vest at truck steering wheel using phone appNot All AI is Created Equal

This application of AI to predict and, at the earliest point possible, prevent accidents is one of the most compelling benefits of today’s telematics and data systems. But beware: As AI is a hot term, some providers tout their AI-powered solutions when there is no true AI functionality incorporated. As we often recommend, don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions to ensure the telematics and data system presented to you really does what is promised.

The safe operation of your fleet is in the hands of your drivers. While that can be a sobering thought, it’s great to know that technology, in the form of AI, can now boost the effectiveness of your safety program by helping keep your drivers out of harm’s way.