The average motorist has about a one in 15 chance of being in a car accident each year. For service fleet technicians who spend a large part of their workday traveling to and from jobs and worksites, the chance of being in a crash only increases.
On-the-job crashes cost companies on average more than $26,000 per crash, according to the Network of Employers for Traffic Safety; the costs can skyrocket when serious injuries or fatalities result from an accident. And there are also a host of indirect costs that can make accidents even more expensive, such as increased insurance premiums, loss of productivity, damage to reputation and more.
Worse yet, companies are more likely to be targeted with fraud, false claims and lawsuits in which plaintiff’s attorneys employ tactics like the reptile theory to obtain large jury awards that could potentially force a business to close their doors altogether.
As a business, it can start to feel like the deck is stacked against you. But there is an affordable technology solution that can help protect your company from false claims and nuclear verdicts: video telematics. Moreover, a video telematics solution with integrated GPS location and driver behavior data can help you boost operational efficiency and increase the safety of your fleet, potentially heading off accidents before they happen.
Protect Your Technicians, Business and Bottom Line with Video
Video telematics (also known as dash cams) act as an unbiased, unblinking witness to what happens on the road. In the case of an on-the-job crash, video evidence can quickly establish who is at fault for an accident, often exonerating your driver and saving you the time and expense associated with defending against a claim – not to mention the potential for increased insurance premiums.
While accidents are costly for companies, they can also result in legal issues for company drivers and hurt their future employability. Cameras remove the “he said, she said” from the equation and can clear drivers when they are not at fault for an accident.
“We’ve had a few accidents where if it wasn’t for the cameras, we probably would have been found at fault just because of how it hit the vehicle or the location of the vehicle,” said Brett Spicer of International Wood Products (IWP), which added EROAD’s Clarity Dashcam to its fleet in 2021.
In crashes where your driver does bear some responsibility, video footage can facilitate a speedy settlement, saving your company money in the long run.
“Even in the event that the camera footage shows that the commercial driver was responsible, it’s better to know that and quickly get the claim closed,” said Dan Petrillo of LaPorte Insurance. “The more quickly we can get a liability determination in the life of that claim, the less likely it will turn into a much larger dollar claim.”
While dash cam footage can be crucial for exonerating drivers in traffic accidents, video can also help you sort out any minor claims and complaints that arise. For instance, someone may claim that your technician caused property damage with their vehicle. You can easily go back and review the footage and determine what really happened.
Improve Fleet Safety with Driver Behavior Data
Proactive safety coaching is crucial to preventing crashes and other incidents that can harm your business. That’s where a video telematics solution integrated with driver behavior data can be especially helpful.
Automated alerts about potentially dangerous driving behavior – speeding, hard cornering, harsh acceleration, hard braking – paired with video footage provide the hard data you need for impactful coaching. Eliminating dangerous driving behaviors also results in less wear and tear on your vehicles, reducing unplanned maintenance and extending vehicle life.
“It allows us to hold [drivers] accountable, but also to not falsely accuse them of something that they weren’t doing,” IWP’s Spicer said. “If someone calls in about a driver and says they were driving erratically, we can see if that was or wasn’t the case. We found that it works to our drivers’ advantage more than anything else, as opposed to a way to get them in trouble.”
Boost Efficiency and Customer Satisfaction with GPS Tracking
Visibility is key to running an efficient service fleet. A video telematics solution that incorporates GPS location data provides the visibility you need. Knowing where your vehicles are in real time lets you better manage your fleet, track whether your technicians are arriving at the correct worksites on time and provide accurate ETAs to your customers as traffic and road conditions change throughout the day.
The visibility provided by video telematics extends to the worksite as well. Service or utility fleets, for instance, use vehicle dash cams to capture images at jobsites, improving communication between field crews and the home office and expediting problem solving.
EROAD Clarity Dashcam: A Total Video Telematics Solution
EROAD’s Clarity Dashcam is an affordable video telematics solution for service fleets that incorporates road-facing and optional driver-facing video with real-time GPS tracking and driver behavior data – all in a single unit with no additional equipment required.
Key Features of EROAD Clarity Dashcam
- Simple and secure driver log on: With Clarity Solo’s contactless NFC driver logon you can easily associate all video and telematics data to specific drivers. Choose from a fob, sticker or card to equip your drivers with an easy log on.
- MyEROAD Replay: Cloud-based review makes it easy to review footage and know where your drivers are from wherever you are.
- Map-based video retrieval: It’s often easier to remember where an incident happened rather than when it happened. You can search for video captured by Clarity Solo based on location by simply clicking on the driver’s route in the MyEROAD portal. Searching for video based on timestamp is also available.
- HD video day and night: Clarity Solo provides HD quality recording, including road- and driver-facing, with night vision supported by infrared LEDs.
- Automatic trigger: Video events are automatically generated, and footage is uploaded to the cloud based on driver behavior, such as hard braking and harsh cornering.
- Manual trigger: Drivers can also push the manual trigger to initiate an event, automatically uploading the footage to the MyEROAD portal.
- Location and activity: Know where your vehicles are with GPS tracking and activity reports.
- Driver behavior data: Get insights into safety-critical events, such as speeding, harsh braking, hard cornering and rapid acceleration for more effective driver coaching that can improve safety and reduce maintenance costs.