Brake Urges Fleets To Use In-Vehicle Safety Technology

Technology Can Help Firms Improve Safety, Lower Costs And Cut Emissions

23.10.2013

Road safety charity Brake has published new guidance that gives fleet operators a better idea of how technology can be used to enhance the safety of their drivers.

As well as hints and tips, the guide contains case studies of companies that have successfully adopted in-vehicle technology.

Some fleets have been reluctant to use these devices because of the high costs involved, but Brake insists that firms will save money in the long run.

Many gadgets are capable of recording and analysing driver behaviour, making it easier for companies to identify any bad habits they may have picked up. Training sessions can then be offered to help employees iron out these errors.

Sponsored by driver performance and safety management specialist GreenRoad, the report is being made available to members of the Fleet Safety Forum for free, while non-subscribers can purchase it for £5.

Professional engagement manager at Brake Roz Cumming said: "In-vehicle technology can greatly increase driver safety when used effectively, but requires careful evaluation and management.

"This report gives practical guidance on what to consider when selecting and implementing technological solutions for your fleet."

Last week, Brake produced another special pack that contained guidance on how fleet managers can tackle driver distraction.

Many accidents on the UK's roads are caused by motorists who have had their attention diverted by the radio, mobile phones, satellite navigation systems and passengers.

A survey conducted by the charity suggested that 98 per cent of companies are already taking action to prevent their drivers from losing their concentration.

Around 58 per cent of firms educate their employees on risks, while 28 per cent have banned all use of mobile phone and hands-free kits. Nearly half of the fleets that took part in the survey have also ordered their drivers not to adjust sat nav devices while they are on the move.

Ms Cumming said distraction at the wheel can have "devastating consequences".

"These resources highlight the danger distracted drivers pose to themselves and other road users," she added.

Expert Opinion
“It will be interesting to see how technology will develop in a way that encourages careful driving and helps to keep company’s staff safe whilst out on the roads.

“Professional drivers spending many thousands of hours on the road every year are particularly at risk, from a number a factors including fatigue, bad phone habits and demanding delivery schedules. It is not only the drivers themselves, but other roads users who can suffer the devastating consequences of what can happen when drivers are distracted or take their eyes off the road, even just for a second.

“My colleagues and I have long supported the fantastic work which Brake does in raising awareness of the importance of road safety and I hope the report encourages more companies to invest in emerging technology to keep their staff and others safe on the roads.”
Neil Whiteley, Partner