Getting behind the wheel on today’s roads is no walk in the park. As a result of both aggressive and distracted driving behavior, the rate of automobile accidents is rising steadily. Along with the accident rate, the cost of dealing with the aftermath of fleet accidents is substantial. However, although lowering your fleet’s TCO is an important aspect of fleet management, the safety of your fleet and drivers is far more important.
Fortunately for you, there is a sure way to help prevent accidents within your fleet. By using a telematics solution such as Donlen’s DriverPoint® Telematics, you can monitor the behavior of your drivers at an individual level to identify indicators of accident risk. Once identified, you can provide the necessary coaching or training to improve or correct the aggressive or improper driving behavior, and ultimately prevent fleet accidents.
Click here to download our free white paper on how to use a wide range of data, including telematics data, to prevent fleet accidents
One of the main reasons to use a telematics solution is to track infractions that are indicative of risky driving behavior. Telematics data points that can help you identify your fleet’s riskiest drivers and coach their behavior to reduce your fleet’s accident rate include harsh acceleration and deceleration, speed events, and seat belt usage. Now let’s take a deeper dive into how you can use that data to improve the safety of your fleet.
Reducing harsh acceleration and deceleration reduces preventable accidents
Hard acceleration and deceleration are often used as indicators of risky driving behavior because drivers who consistently accelerate quickly or slam on the brakes are likely driving too fast and/or not leaving enough distance between themselves and the car in front of them. That’s why monitoring and coaching harsh acceleration and deceleration is a good way to prevent fleet accidents.
Through the implementation of Donlen’s DriverPoint Telematics technology, one Donlen customer with a fleet of more than 2,000 vehicles was able to reduce harsh acceleration by 14% and reduce harsh decelerations by 26%. This lead to a significant improvement in their fleet’s number of preventable accidents per million miles.
Monitor and coach speed events to decrease your fleet’s accident rate
Frequent speed events are another good sign that a driver is risky for your fleet. Specifically, drivers who often drive 21+ mph over the posted speed limit are at a high risk for accidents.
Another Donlen customer with a fleet of more than 5,000 vehicles was also able to improve the safety of their fleet through telematics by monitoring and coaching high-risk speed events.
In the first quarter of 2016, the drivers for this particular customer recorded almost 72,000 speed events (defined as 21+ mph over the posted speed limit). By monitoring this type of behavior and providing the necessary coaching for high-risk speeding events, the customer was able to reduce their number of recorded speed events year over year by 30,000 events in the second quarter of 2016 and an additional almost 7,000 events in the third quarter of 2016. Consequently, reducing the number of speeding violations improved the safety of their fleet and reported decreases in road vehicle accidents (RVAs) and costs.
Keep your drivers safe by requiring (and tracking!) seat belt usage
The bottom line is that seat belts keep people safe. Telematics devices can provide you with data to identify drivers who are not wearing their seat belts. Drivers who do not wear their seatbelts are not only putting themselves at risk, but also increasing your fleet’s risk in the process. That’s why it is crucial to require seat belt usage in your fleet’s safety policy and have a process for corrective action in place for when drivers are found to be driving without using their seat belts.
Get your drivers home safely by using data to prevent fleet accidents
In addition to telematics data, you can also use red light/speed violations, MVR points, accident data, hours of services violations, history of required training, and policy compliance data in order to monitor, manage, and coach driver behavior to prevent fleet accidents in the future. To learn more about how these data points can help improve your fleet’s safety, download our white paper, “Using Data to Prevent Fleet Accidents.”
The telematics data points we’ve outlined here, in addition to all of the data points that can be found in our latest white paper, can all be managed through the Donlen Risk Center, helping you improve the safety of your fleet and reduce your fleet’s accident rate by 15-20%.
That said, data alone can’t reduce accidents for your fleet. It takes the collaborative effort of fleet managers and drivers as well as the guidance provided by documents like a fleet safety policy. However, monitoring these data points and using them to improve risky driver behavior will help fleet managers to start the process of reducing their fleet’s accident rate.