Fleet management relies on telematics devices and comprehensive software to track vehicle locations and boost fleet efficiency while ensuring safety.
The other crucial component of fleet management is your drivers — you must manage them and ensure that they’re driving safely, responsibly, and efficiently.
While tracking drivers and onboard diagnostics (OBD) are vital, fleet management systems with video-based safety solutions enabled by wireless dash cams bring greater driver safety and risk mitigation benefits to fleet operators.
With video from the road, operators get contextual insights that can help pinpoint driver errors, identify driving patterns and risky behaviors, see what went wrong in an accident, and much more.
In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about wireless dash cams and why they’re a crucial part of intelligent fleet management.
How are wireless dash cams used in fleets?
Wireless dash cams are installed in fleet vehicles' cabs and record driver-facing and road-facing footage. This means it records high-quality videos of what the driver is doing and everything in front of the vehicle.
This footage is stored on a cloud platform, and operators can access it using software like the CalAmp Application.
The primary purpose of wireless dash cams is to monitor how drivers operate their vehicles on the road. Operators and managers can observe drivers in real time if needed. They can also set up in-cab and notification alerts for risky driving, such as speeding and harsh braking.
All recorded footage can be reviewed to identify driving patterns and coach drivers to maintain road safety standards.
Videos may also show drivers that are repeatedly indulging in hazardous behavior, such as using their cell phones while driving or following other vehicles too closely. These drivers can be re-trained or reprimanded.
In case of collisions or accidents, video footage provides context, acts as legal evidence, helps law enforcement, and can save companies thousands of dollars while potentially exonerating drivers.
Recording the vehicle’s interior adds a layer of safety that can prevent theft. They can also protect drivers in case of robberies or stolen vehicles or equipment.
5 reasons to use wireless dash cams for your fleet
If you’re on the fence about wireless dash cams, here are five crucial reasons that will underline the importance of video for your fleet safety:
1. Enhance fleet safety
The first step of a fleet safety program is to create uniform guidelines drivers must follow while operating their vehicles.
However, successfully enforcing guidelines on safe driving behaviors relies heavily on video. Without video, operators and managers can only see where the vehicle is and other engine diagnostics. Both provide a partial picture of how a driver is actually driving.
With wireless dashboard cameras and video-based safety solutions, operators, owners, and managers can see exactly what is happening on the road and within the vehicle. They can instantly spot unsafe driving practices and coach drivers through voice control.
Recorded footage can also be analyzed to identify specific patterns and drivers that do not meet safety standards. For example, you could notice that one or more drivers are close to or exceeding the speed limit at a specific location so they can complete their routes on time.
In this case, advising drivers against speeding will not be as effective as extending delivery times, setting an earlier departure time, or using a different route.
Notice how the blame would’ve fallen squarely on the drivers without video context. But, with video clips, operators get an overall view of the situation and develop adequate solutions.
In most scenarios, video context is a crucial advantage to maintaining fleet safety.
2. Prevent collisions
Collisions can prove deadly for fleet drivers and drivers of other vehicles involved. They can also cost companies hundreds of thousands of dollars in repairs, damages, and even nuclear litigation verdicts.
Vehicles involved in collisions are also sidelined for long periods, leading to decreased fleet productivity and increased workload for other vehicles and drivers in the fleet.
Fleet operators are, thus, heavily focused on preventing collisions. Video and fleet telematics solutions are critical for this.
With software like the CalAmp Application, operators get instant alerts for dangerous driving behavior, such as sudden turns, speeding, and hard braking.
These alerts prompt fleet operators to act immediately and get in touch with the drivers to coach them and avoid further incidents.
Videos via fleet dash cameras provide information related to each alert and can help decide if the driver needs improvement or if the recorded incident was due to external factors, such as the car in front of them suddenly stopping.
Using both tools together, operators can enhance their fleet safety and ensure everyone is being safe while out on deliveries or service appointments.
3. Protect the company and drivers
While fleet safety programs are vital, accidents are unavoidable. The first step in maintaining a safe fleet is to use AI-enabled video triggers to help mitigate collisions and identify poor driving.
But, when a collision does occur, video-based safety solutions provide context before, during, and after the incident.
Dash cams record footage that can be reviewed for evidence to decide who was at fault and help evaluate liability.
This protects companies as they can avoid blame for collisions caused by another motorist’s poor judgment. Videos can also curtail fraudulent claims from other drivers and speed up otherwise lengthy legal proceedings.
Drivers also gain peace of mind knowing they can be exonerated for collisions that were not their fault. This builds trust between drivers, operators, and the company.
Company reputation is another major factor affected by repeated collisions. If a service provider is regularly late or misses deliveries due to road incidents, customers will likely distrust the organization and look towards competitors.
4. Improve decision making
Reporting is a significant part of fleet management and safety. Operators and owners need access to historical data to better understand and run their fleet.
With the right telematics solution, operators can collect specific reports to identify patterns regarding risky driving behavior, repeat offenders, and constant problems impacting fleet safety.
They can use this to make informed decisions and coach drivers. When footage from the front and rear dash cameras captures contextual data, on the driver and surrounding environment, operators can see the entire picture instead of just parts.
This overview helps them gain genuine insights and improves their decision-making capabilities.
5. Boost productivity
Wireless dash cams combined with telematics can prevent incidents that cause lengthy downtimes and decrease productivity. This includes accidents, collisions, delays on the road, and poor driving.
Since supervisors can see and manage all of these elements, sometimes even before they occur (like collisions), there’s a lower chance of severe disruptions to daily fleet operations.
When operators can ensure that their drivers are well-trained and safe on the road, they can focus on how to maximize fleet potential instead of constantly worrying about incidents.
How to pick the right wireless dash cam for your fleet
If you’re looking to get a wireless dash cam for your fleet, here are seven key features that it must have:
It’s not enough for your dash cams to just record driving footage. To truly unlock the potential of your fleet and ensure safety, your cameras and the software supporting them must use AI technology.
Unlike a standard camera, AI-powered dash cams can detect and alert operators of circumstances that might lead to collisions.
This leads to proactive action, such as driver coaching, rather than reactive action, aka settlements and legal action after an incident occurs. Consequently, companies save time and money.
AI cameras can also detect imminent collisions and send in-cab alerts to drivers, so they can react quickly and prevent the incident.
2. Detailed reports and videos after incidents
When an incident occurs, it’s vital that the operators, managers, and company find out precisely what happened, how, and why. To aid with this, you need a fleet management system that provides detailed crash reports and videos of the incident.
A solution like the CalAmp Application logs the actual events before, during, and after an incident, with wireless dash cameras providing video of the entire collision.
With data and HD video like this, companies can disprove false claims and streamline their insurance and legal processes. These reports and features will help them save money and time that would have otherwise been spent on legal battles and settlements.
3. Real-time footage
Fleet operators need access to real-time footage to ensure that all drivers follow safety guidelines. This is crucial for newer drivers or drivers involved in prior on-road incidents.
Dashcam videos help managers keep a close eye on drivers. When drivers are tired, stressed, or distracted, it puts them and everyone else around them at risk.
To prevent this, the CalAmp Application with video-based safety shows driver-facing and road-facing real-time video. The tool allows instant two-way communication so operators can immediately correct and coach drivers.
Footage from the fleet camera systems is stored in the CalAmp Telematics Cloud so managers can review them and use them in future coaching sessions to show drivers what they should or shouldn’t do.
4. Instant alerts
Anything that can compromise a fleet vehicle or lead to a collision calls for immediate action. So your wireless dash cam provider must also have features that can alert operators, managers, and drivers in real time.
Using CalAmp’s video-based safety solution, for example, operators get quick alerts of any risky driving. They know what unsafe driving behavior occurred and can also see where and when. The video from the dash cams acts as added proof.
They can use these alerts, which include harsh driving, distracted driving, speeding, tailgating and more, to make quick decisions and relay them to the driver to reduce the chance of collision.
5. Unified fleet management
Video recording is just one aspect of effective fleet management. You don’t want to use a different app for every part of fleet operations, including tracking, scheduling, payroll, reporting, maintenance, and safety.
Using 10 different apps, each with its own purpose and data, hinders fleet managers, who often have to make decisions quickly.
If an operator wants to alter the schedule of a vehicle already on the road, they can’t waste time going through multiple apps to do so.
So, your video-based safety solution must have additional features and be part of a dynamic, unified fleet management platform like the CalAmp Application.
With the CalAmp Application, operators gain end-to-end fleet visibility and can handle every important fleet element on one software. The platform offers built-in GPS tracking, automated maintenance alerts, detailed incident reports, and many other features.
6. Mobile access
Restricting fleet operators and managers to only receiving data at specific offices or job sites can be unproductive and even dangerous. It’s crucial that your team can access fleet data anywhere, any time.
Every minute counts when it comes to fleet safety. And mobile apps are essential for operators to have 24/7 access.
Let’s take harsh braking, for example. If a driver has a harsh braking incident, the operator has to find out why and coach the driver to prevent further incidents. In some cases, it could be because of poor driving by others on the road. In others, it could be the driver’s fault.
In both scenarios, the manager has to act in a timely manner to ensure their driver, assets, and cargo are okay.
If they can’t act on time because they weren’t at their desk or the right job site, there could be major consequences.
7. Regular reporting
The video-based fleet management software you select must provide regular reports that are accessible at all times.
Operators rely on data to make daily decisions, and they must be able to sort through and filter reports based on their current needs.
With the CalAmp Application, operators can really dig deep and observe every aspect of their fleet so that they can work on improving performance, reducing costs, and maintaining safety.
Wireless dash cams are a must-have for fleet safety. They help protect the company, drivers, and other motorists while improving productivity and decision-making.
CalAmp uses wireless dash cams and other onboard devices to give operators full control over their fleet. They can use one platform to manage fleet safety, ensure regular maintenance, guarantee compliance, and boost efficiency.
Keep your fleet safe while boosting its productivity with CalAmp’s advanced fleet telematics. You can get started with a demo today.