NFI Industries in New Jersey started to put cameras in its 2200 delivery trucks in 2014, and has seen the frequency of accidents cut in half and insurance costs have been reduced by 25%. In one month, the company’s vice president claimed that the company had collected more money for damages to trucks than damage the trucks had caused.
The cameras are linked to gyroscopes, accelerometers and GPS equipment, and the cameras serve as event recorders. If the truck is running, the camera is running. But the purpose of the cameras is not to watch the drivers. Instead, the cameras capture video when there are events such as hard braking, rapid acceleration and swerving.
The system will then capture several seconds of video before and after the event. That allows analysts to see what caused the result.
The reactions of the truckers are also captured. Sometimes the reactions are good, such as when a trucker is able to dodge an obstacle in the road without losing control, or braking quickly to avoid rear ending a car that cut him off.
In other incidents, their performance falls short. The cameras sometimes catch drivers talking on cell phones while driving or falling asleep.
The video is a powerful training tool for trucking companies as they can coach their truckers to improve their driving.
Experts believe that over time, there will be more trucks equipped with similar cameras. Some believe that the cameras will be mandatory eventually, just as electronic log books are becoming.
Our truck accident attorneys in Virginia are pleased to hear that some trucking companies are using technology such as advanced video cameras to improve public and driver safety. The results from the video cameras could be very effective tools to better educate drivers about good and bad driver behavior.
All too often, some truck drivers do not pay enough attention to their driving and cause horrific accidents, such as this devastating rear end truck crash that led to a $5.5 million settlement for our clients. Any tool that can reduce these terrible accidents is a good investment.