A dashcam is a small camera fitted to the interior windscreen of any vehicle, which continuously records either forward-facing, driver-facing or 360-degree views of a vehicle. It’s primarily a safety tool, designed to promote safe driving or capture evidence which insurers may need following a motor vehicle claim, but dashcams haven’t always had the best reputation, particularly in the fleet industry.
Let’s take a look into this, and explore what the true pros and ‘cons’ of vehicle dashcams really are. It’s time to bust some myths.
Operators will know exactly what their drivers are doing.
That’s right, they will. But that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
Having this visibility of what drivers are doing means that operators can help identify particular driving styles or behaviours. Things like harsh braking, speeding, turning corners too quickly or engine idling – all habits which, if identified and prevented from happening again, could help to extend the vehicles’ lifespan, reduce maintenance costs and ensure the vehicle is in a completely safe, working condition.
Dashcams are there to scare drivers.
The truth is, no one wants to be an unsafe driver, and if a driver isn’t driving safely, then that’s as much on an employer as it is on the driver themselves, especially if the vehicle has your company’s branding on the side. No company wants to receive a phone call telling them their driver is driving erratically.
HGVs, vans, pick-ups, all vehicles are expensive to buy and run, so keeping them safe is obviously a good idea. But as a human resource, drivers are also expensive to look after and even more to replace. Keeping them safe is very important – they’re the most important asset to any fleet business.
Anyone can watch the footage taken on a dashcam, it’s not private.
Whilst most dashcam video footage is stored in the cloud, it can only be viewed by those with direct login access to the fleet management software the business is using.
For example, fleet operators can view the video recordings when driver safety events occur, including speeding, heavy braking, aggressive acceleration and harsh cornering. Or internal training teams can access the footage to build safe driving programmes. But that video footage will never be accessible to anyone outside of the business – it’s strictly limited to user access, and that’s actually a compliance regulation that telematics providers always need to ensure.
Fleet operators only want dashcams to spy on drivers.
By default, dashcams are implemented into vehicle to ‘monitor’ driver behaviour, but there are a whole host of other additional business benefits that come with them too. These include:
- Fewer accidents: as dashcams can help to identify dangerous driving behaviours, such as drowsy driving or speeding. As a result, this data can then be used to coach drivers based on their actual behaviour, rather than second guessing and teaching them to suck eggs.
- Lower insurance premiums: as fleets can reduce the number of accidents due to better-trained drivers, improving the business’ claims history and reducing premiums.
- Driver retention: as making driver safety a priority is a key component in keeping employees happy and improving driver retention.
- Reducing fuel costs and environmental impact: as safer driving is also more fuel-efficient driving.
- Lower repair and maintenance spend: as reducing a vehicle’s total cost of ownership through lower repair fees and maintenance costs, is driven by lower accident rates and less frequent maintenance due to better driving styles.
- Incident protection: as fleet operators will be able to easily prove the fault of an accident using actual vehicle footage.
To name just a few!
Installing dashcams will fix all the problems.
Unfortunately, technology isn’t a silver bullet – it’s only as good as the team using it.
The key to successfully adopting any new technology will always be proper training, and particularly for the fleet industry, it’s so important to be clear and transparent with drivers about what it means for them.
There’s bound to be some resilience as change isn’t always fully embraced, but the fleet management solution a business chooses for their dashcams should be able to help here too, as most offer in-house onboarding for both fleet operators and drivers alike.
Instead, it’s about reassuring drivers that dashcams aren’t out to get them, but they’re out to get them to where they need to be, safer.
So, how can Egertons Help?
At Egertons, we’re one of the UK’s leading vehicle rescue and recovery operators, with services stretching from breakdown recovery to specialist assistance, available 24/7/365 service across the country.
Our sophisticated triage process, supported by our 24-hour control room, 300-strong fleet, vast range of equipment available on hand and the technology it is equipped with, means that we’re able to help keep your vehicle downtime to an absolute minimum.
With Egertons, you make one call to our team; and we’ll do the rest.
We’re ready when you are. Every time.