Monday 26 July 2021

On the road to safer driving

Peter Mansfield, group sales and marketing director at vehicle technology specialist Trakm8, examines the shifting role of telematics in shoring up safety on Britain’s roads

With the Covid-19 pandemic forcing businesses across the UK to either limit operations to essential works only or temporarily close down, one of the most significant changes during lockdown has been on Britain’s roads, with thousands fewer vehicles being driven and the average number of car journeys down by 80 per cent.

Taking this into account, it would be reasonable to assume that the number of driving offences ticketed by the police saw a similar decrease.  Perhaps surprisingly though, police forces across the country have reported an increase in the number of speeding offences clocked since stringent measures against unnecessary travel were first introduced.

Indeed, in a recently published report by the Greater Manchester Police, it revealed that 6,200 drivers were caught breaking the speed limit across the North West alone during the first month of lockdown.

Constabularies are also reporting a steep increase in incidences of excessive speeding; where motorists are caught travelling significantly above the legal limit. Officers from London’s Roads and Transport Policing Command (RTPC) recorded a total of 6,379 offences from March to May, with a staggering 142 per cent increase (year-on-year) in extreme speeding.

As lockdown measures continue to be relaxed across Great Britain and non-essential workers begin to return to work, forces will begin to increase visible enforcement activity around areas that are notorious speeding black pots.

The easing of more restrictive government guidelines will also mean we’ll see a greater amount of fleet vehicles on our roads once again. But with many fleet and business vehicle drivers having to work longer hours and often to tighter deadlines, it’s absolutely imperative that drivers travel safely and abide by the legal speed limit to avoid the risk of speeding penalties and fines, points on their licence – or worse.

This will no doubt be cause for concern for many fleet managers, who have already had to contend with lockdown measures, reduced workforces and a significant spike in demand (particularly across the healthcare and FMCG sectors) across the past few months.

With the number of people driving for business set to increase throughout the summer, how can fleet managers ensure that their teams are driving safely while out on the road?

To support fleet managers and help give them added peace of mind, Trakm8 has developed its unique RH600 integrated telematics camera, which combines leading-edge in-cab camera technology with a host of usable data insights to maximise driver performance and, most importantly, safety.

The RH600 can be used as a traditional dashcam, with a dual-camera option which provides a 280-degree field of view, providing crystal-clear footage from a driver’s perspective. What’s more, the camera heads can be removed and positioned anywhere within the vehicle, providing ultimate flexibility to monitor the driver, the road or the vehicle’s cargo.

But the RH600 is more than just a vehicle camera solution. Utilising the same technologies as Trakm8’s most intuitive and sophisticated telematics systems, the RH600 provides a range of integrated functionality and data rich insights which are all accessible from Trakm8’s web portal.

Ultimately, this delivers maximum visibility for fleet managers, providing them with a real-time overview of driver behaviour, enabling them to prioritise the safety of drivers, passengers and other road users by conducting spot checks to identify speeding, mobile phone use and other dangerous driving habits.

Additionally, the footage obtained by the RH600 can also be used in real-world driver training, further bolstering the safety of the fleet and ensuring potentially harmful driving habits are eliminated.

With drivers and fleet managers alike having to adapt to new ways of working, and emergency services dealing with much higher than usual numbers of call-outs, responsible driving has never been more crucial. We are confident that our RH600 solution will not only safeguard road users across the UK, but it could also give fleet managers valuable peace of mind.


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