Commercial Vehicle Telematics is a great way to monitor and improve your fleet’s driving habits and reduce vehicular accidents. The number of accidents involving commercially used vehicles continues to trend upwards and is a great concern in the insurance industry, impacting rates and availability of insurance in some industries.
Similar to Personal Vehicle Telematics, commercial vehicle telematics provides insights on the vehicles speed, acceleration, hard breaking, and location/route. Depending on which telematics program is deployed other metrics may also be available, such as swerving, or frequent lane changing.
Equipped with these insights’ employers can make customized coaching and training programs aimed at improving safe driving habits within their fleet and monitor the success of their efforts. This information can also be used to get bad drivers off your fleet – hopefully before they cause an accident. However, telematics should not be used in place of proper hiring practices including an MVR and background check. Not hiring bad drivers is still a large step in avoiding claims and reducing accident.
Data can likewise be used in defense of an at-fault accident claim by providing evidence of speed and other information leading up to the accident. However, as with most technology this can be a double-edged sword. If a court discovers a company had access to telematics data and took no action to address bad driving habits, they may find themselves facing negligence – or worse- charges.
Before beginning a telematics program, it is important to access whether the data will be analyzed internally, or by a third party. Proper implantation can be time consuming. It is recommended that if a program will be monitored internally that it be begun slowly and bulked up overtime. Select one metric to monitor, such as speed, and add other metrics as you become more comfortable with the program.
Some insurance underwriters understand the value a commercial telematics program brings to a company. Working with your independent insurance agent allows you to find Insurance Carriers that offer discounts or other incentives for implementing a successful telematics program.
Contact your independent agent to discuss your plans for implementing a telematics program with your commercial fleet.