When I’m completing a risk management review for one of our commercial partners, the most common area of losses we discuss are fleet claims. Whether your company has one vehicle or 100, having drivers out on the roadway poses a constant risk to your vehicles and employees.

I often run into attitudes such as “Well, those are just unavoidable,” or, “That’s why we have insurance to handle the damages.” However, lots of accidents are avoidable, and improving driver/vehicle performance has myriad benefits to a company. Insurance can repair or replace a vehicle, but it can’t reduce the stress of having a vehicle out of service, an employee injured after an accident, or being sued for an accident that wasn’t the fault of your driver.

A powerful tool in managing vehicles is telematics with cameras. Simply explained, telematics are devices placed in your vehicles that can provide a huge amount of information to benefit your company. These systems continue to increase in quality and decrease in cost.

Here are some typical applications:

  • Know where your vehicles are with real time location/status: improve customer service with exact delivery or arrival times.
  • Improve driver behavior and safety: identify bad driving habits and use the data to train your drivers to correct issues before they result in accidents. Develop a culture of safe driving.
  • Vehicle maintenance: track your vehicle performance and identify issues while they remain simple repairs and not expensive breakdowns.
  • Improved fleet performance: use to improve routing efficiency, fuel usage, and driver scores/rewards.
  • Accident investigation: most accidents are not the fault of your drivers, but rarely do commercial drivers get the benefit of the doubt at the scene of a collision. A camera add-on can prove what actually happened during an accident, and ensure that fault is accurately determined. These cameras can also be used to identify and reduce distracted driving.

These systems are too often viewed as “big brother watching me” by drivers, making fleet owners/managers hesitant to install. However, if explained and utilized properly (be transparent with drivers, and involve them in the results gained from the systems), it can have a huge impact on your culture and fleet performance. Properly used telematics show your drivers that you care about their safety. I encourage fleet owners to try a system out in one vehicle. When they see the benefits, it’s common for telematics to quickly be installed in all the vehicles.

Central Mutual Insurance has partnered with Azuga to obtain best in class vehicle telematics and camera systems at significant savings. Check out the benefits and pricing here: https://www.azuga.com/premium-partner/central-insco. I strongly encourage fleet owners to give these systems a chance, you’ll be amazed at just how much you can tailor this technology to benefit your business.

The information above is of a general nature and your policy and coverages provided may differ from the examples provided. Please read your policy in its entirety to determine your actual coverage available.

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