Advances in driver-less and electric technology have been making all the headlines recently. Yet innovations in trucking go far beyond autonomous and sustainable technologies. There is another evolution underway, and it may have even greater implications for the trucking industry. The new frontier is in safety technology.
From data, monitoring, and analytics, the landscape for truck drivers and trucking companies is safer than ever. While the change in safety technology in the last 10 years can seem overwhelming, the change represents a lot of good news for the industry. First, it is important to start simple.
Don’t Dive In
In order to prevent yourself from getting your eyes crossed with all the safety changes and technologies available today, start simple. Simple things like backup alarms and collision-mitigation technologies like automatic braking can make all the difference without making you go crazy in implementation.
Features like stability and traction control also allow for a minor investment without breaking the bank or creating too much confusion. Timing is also important. Rather than adding a ton of technologies all at once, doing a staggered implementation lets truck drivers and fleet managers learn the new technology without a huge learning curve.
Make It Standard
Many fleets now standardize many safety technologies that were once considered options. From adaptive cruise control to stationary object detection and lane-departure warnings, truck drivers who move between fleets are no longer surprised by these technologies.
These add-ons are not annoying to truck drivers or overly intrusive. If anything, experienced truckers now expect these technologies. Ensuring these safety technologies come standard will keep your truckers safe and mitigate any financial damage from litigation.
Entertainment As Safety
Although it may seem counterintuitive, many fleet managers are learning that entertainment technology can also help with overall safety measures. Whether it be Bluetooth connectivity, satellite radio or Apple Car Play integration, these technologies do more than make truck drivers happy.
Consider that wireless technologies allow truck drivers to focus on the road ahead rather than fiddling with dash controls or trying to make a call while they are operating a commercial motor vehicle. It is important that fleets do not view these technologies as a distraction, but rather as a safety-enhancer.
Maintenance And Safety
Not only is some of this newer technology helping safety professionals ensure their truck drivers operate safer out on the nation’s roads, it also provides a window into maintenance issues that could turn into safety issues. Whether it be a potential blow-out or a vital under-the-hood component, providing a solution to address maintenance from a safety perspective is critical.
Technologies exist that allow shop technicians to receive alerts when something is about to go wrong on a commercial motor vehicle. There is simply far too much at stake to leave such things to the whims of chance. Invest in smart maintenance technologies today.
Video To Start
Video-monitoring technology collects data and video related to incidents and is one of the easiest safety technologies to adopt. Many fleets today have already outfitted their vehicles with video-capture technology to help them coach their truck drivers and improve their overall safety profile.
Event-triggered cameras immediately jump into action when a risk event occurs, whether it be a hard brake or near collision. These are great coaching tools because they allow truck drivers to view things they could never view before. The video can be used almost like a game film to help show the truck driver how to improve their performance.