Smart dash cams
Dash cams (short for dashboard cameras) are cameras that can be installed on – or in – a vehicle that are designed to capture road and in-cab driving footage. For years, dash cams served the purpose of allowing fleet managers to see what’s going on within their vehicle fleet. Today, dash cams have evolved to integrate other telematics solutions, such as real-time GPS tracking, g-sensors and internet connectivity.
Modern video telematics solutions create a digital system that gives fleet managers the opportunity to monitor driving quality, route adherence, safety-related incidents, operational hours and their vehicle fleets’ maintenance needs. All the while, these points of access are connected to the Internet and incident footage or data can be directly uploaded to a central hub – and backed up to the cloud.
The benefits of smart dash cams
Smart dash cams can provide a variety of cost-saving and safety-related benefits for their users. Here are five benefits of installing smart dash cams for fleet managers:
Exonerate innocent drivers with real-time incident footage
Being blamed for a road accident that’s not their fault can be devastating to a driver and fleet company’s reputations. Smart dash cams are able to upload high-quality incident footage to the cloud, automatically. If your fleet driver isn’t at fault, they can be exonerated immediately and the company can avoid protracted and expensive insurance claims. With real-time footage, you can prove why an accident occurred and exonerate your innocent fleet driver.
Reduce the likelihood of road accidents
Fleet managers can use smart dash cams to automatically upload any incident-related footage to their cloud server. Managers can identify dangerous activities, like speeding, harsh-breaking, running red lights, distracted driving and more, and use that footage to coach their drivers. You can analyse trends and identify safety issues to help increase the quality of your drivers and the coaching tools used to train them. In-cab alerts can also help to prevent real-time incidents and alert drivers when their behaviour on the road needs to be adjusted.
Lower your insurance-related costs
Insurance premiums are largely impacted by the safety and security of your fleet vehicles. Smart dash cams have proven to mitigate the risk of road incidents and improve vehicle safety. Your insurance company could offer premium discounts and savings for fleets that install smart dash cams and share their drivers’ road behaviour and safety data.
Improve vehicle maintenance
Reducing wear and tear on your vehicles can come down to preventing harsh braking, reckless driving and missed maintenance checks. Dash cams can provide in-cab alerts to reduce the likelihood of harsh driving events and vehicle data can inform fleet managers when their vehicles are in need of a service or maintenance check.
Retain fleet drivers and reduce labour costs
Smart dash cams create an environment where fleet managers save on labour costs and improve the professional wellbeing of their drivers. This may seem counterintuitive; however, your management team can monitor driver quality and keep track of needed behaviour changes. You can tie the safety scores of your drivers to robust rewards programmes, which will increase driver engagement and retention. This leads to greater efficiency, less turnover and reduced hiring and training costs.
Important features to consider when choosing the best dash cam for your fleet
Video telematics are evolving all the time and GPS tracking is one of the key benefits of smart dash cams. This is incredibly helpful for providing real-time location data and identify driving behaviours, speeds and routes, as well as where a road incident happens.
The configuration or placement of your dash cams can be an important factor in how beneficial video telematics are to your fleet. Outward-facing dash cams can provide a variety of useful, real-time footage of what is occurring around your fleet vehicle. In-cab facing dash cams can monitor driver behaviour and ensure that all fleet vehicles are operating safely and effectively.
The best dash cams of today will include some sort of built-in artificial intelligence (AI). This AI helps create better coaching methods, improve data analysis, real-time detection of safety incidents and integrate Internet connectivity – and to other IoT devices.
Most dash cams are equipped with internet connectivity through high-speed mobile connections. This allows for the utilisation of multiple apps, online services, IoT devices and remote control, as well as instant access to – and auto-uploading of – fleet data.
Harsh Driving Detection
It’s important for fleet managers to know when harsh driving events occur and receive the real-time data and footage as soon as possible. The best dash cams are equipped with a built-in gyroscope or accelerometer that can detect events, like collisions or harsh braking. This is very helpful when designing coaching programmes to train new or old fleet drivers.
Camera Specs and Setup
Features may vary between smart dash cams and finding the right collection of tools will be critical to getting all the benefits of a video telematics solution. Your camera should record in Full HD and offer a wide field of view to secure the best quality footage, this also includes added features like night vision.
Dash cams are usually mounted by suction cups or adhesives, the latter has proved to be the easiest and most secure installation method. Your smart dash cam should also have audio recording and speakers to improve data collection, safety alerts and driver access.
Coaching, Monitoring and Admin Tools
The utilisation of these video telematics solutions gives fleet managers the opportunity to enhance their administrative, coaching and monitoring tools. Your smart dash cam should be able to connect to a variety of online tools and cloud-based applications. There are digital platforms which can help to improve driver consistency, safety and accountability – as well as keeping drivers engaged.
Are smart dash cams worth investing in for your fleet?
Smart dash cams have been shown to improve fleet management, driver safety and cost-efficiency. They also add a layer of protection for your drivers and companies from being blamed for a road incident that aren’t their fault. Video telematics solutions may require a big, initial investment, but the benefits are nearly endless and growing by the day. Yes, they are worth the investment.
If you’re looking for the latest in fleet management technology and want industry-leading video telematics solutions, speak to one of our helpful and informative consultants at Landmark Tracking.