March 1, 2023

Commercial trucking is an essential part of the economy, but it can also be a dangerous and high-risk industry. There are a variety of factors that contribute to this risk, including driver fatigue, distracted driving, hazardous weather conditions, and other environmental factors.

Video-based safety systems can help to mitigate some of these risks by providing real-time feedback to drivers and fleet managers. They can help to identify risky driving behaviors and provide coaching to drivers to help them improve their skills and avoid accidents. Video-based safety systems can also provide valuable data and insights to fleet managers, allowing them to identify patterns and trends in driver behavior and make changes to improve safety over time.

In this blog, we’ll discuss the many ways companies like yours can harness a robust and reliable video-safety approach for superior protection as part of your fleet management system. Let’s dive in!

What Is Video-Based Safety?

Video-based safety in trucking refers to the use of cameras and related technologies to enhance safety and reduce risks associated with commercial trucking operations. Video-based safety systems typically involve the installation of cameras on commercial trucks to monitor driver behavior, roadway conditions, and potential hazards.

These systems can capture data on a wide range of factors, including vehicle speed, driver alertness, sudden movements, following distance, and adherence to traffic laws. The footage can be used to identify risky driving behaviors and to provide feedback to drivers in real-time, allowing them to adjust their behavior and avoid accidents.

In addition to improving safety on the road, video-based safety systems can also provide benefits for fleet management and compliance. They can help companies identify patterns of behavior that could lead to accidents or other safety incidents, allowing them to take corrective action and reduce risk over time. Additionally, video-based safety systems can be used to ensure compliance with regulations and industry best practices, providing an additional layer of protection for drivers, other motorists, and cargo.

Video-Based Safety and Nuclear Verdicts

Nuclear verdicts — jury verdicts that result in monetary payouts of extreme sums of money — can combust even the most solid businesses. These verdicts are on the rise and have been a top industry issue for quite some time.

According to the American Transportation Research Institute:

  • The average size of nuclear verdicts rose 1,000% between 2010 and 2018
  • From 2012 to 2019, there was a 235% increase in cases with nuclear verdicts of over $1 million

Additionally, the National Safety Council concluded over 5,000 large trucks were involved in fatal crashes in 2019, which is a 43% increase from 2010. Fatal crashes and nuclear verdicts are increasing. Professional drivers are well aware of these risks and often prioritize companies that take driver safety seriously. We are also more aware of company discrepancies than ever before, both on the social media front and on digital media platforms. So, even if you manage to overcome a nuclear verdict, your business reputation may be brutalized.

Litigation is serious business, and professional drivers are historically blamed for accidents — even though our statistics show they’re not at fault 80% of the time. Without sufficient evidence, you could be on the hook for paying out large settlements.

Prosecutors are well aware of advancements in technology and often look down on carriers who haven’t invested in it, deeming them culprits of unsafe practices.

Why Invest in a Driver-Centric Approach to Safety?

Carriers who create a leading truck safety with enhanced video-based fleet safety technology can:

  • Reduce frequent and severe accidents
  • Exonerate innocent drivers with reliable video evidence
  • Disassociate themselves from nuclear verdicts and increases in insurance premiums

Enhanced video-based safety technology from Omnitracs + SmartDrive can help you identify leading risk indicators and correct them before they lead to collisions. These indicators include critical unsafe behaviors, such as harsh braking. This way, you’re targeting safety coaching to every driver’s specific needs. If there are any unsafe driving behaviors you need to address in near real-time, our video technology makes that possible.

As safety events are triggered and addressed, you can drive continuous improvement in your transportation safety program with help from AI. AI only truly works when you have ample and accurate data to predictively address risk in your fleet. You can then view your fleet safety data, which translates to robust metrics and reports, on interactive dashboards.

Businesses who worked with us to create efficient safety cultures in their operations were able to:

  • Reduce collisions by 62%
  • Exonerate 11 drivers in one year
  • Reduce claims’ costs by 25%

Find success like these businesses did, so drivers get home safely and your business name remains intact.

If you’d like to learn more about video-based safety, take a look at our webinar on video-based safety in full to gain all our key talking points and real-world examples of enhanced video technology, or contact us today!

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