The primary benefits of fleet dash cams include the ability to capture footage of everything that happens on the road and around the truck, increasing driver safety and reducing litigation risk. But a lesser-known benefit is that dash cams can lower insurance costs for fleets.
Learn all about how dash cams relate to insurance costs by reading the article below.
What Are Fleet Dash Cams?
Fleet dash cams are valuable tools for reducing accident disputes and coaching driver behavior. The typical options include:
- Road-facing dash cameras – mounted inside the cab of trucks, generally placed in the center of the windshield. The cameras capture what is happening on the road, collision events, and more.
- Driver-facing dash cameras – mounted inside the cab, toward the driver. The cameras monitor and record driver behaviors and what is happening inside the cab. Driver-facing, or interior dash cameras, can include audio.
- Side / exterior dash cameras – mounted outside of the vehicle. These cameras help provide a full 360-view of the road and truck.
- Rear dash cameras – mounted outside the vehicle, on the back. These cameras monitor the road behind the truck.
Cameras with both forward-facing lenses and rear-facing capabilities can provide you with a comprehensive view of what is happening at all times from all angles.
If a driver’s actions are ever called into question, dash cam footage can be used to exonerate the driver of wrongdoing. Dash cameras can also help fleets show that they are in compliance with safety regulations during an audit or a roadside inspection.
How Do Fleet Dash Cams Work?
A fleet dash cam uses telematics to understand a vehicle’s movements as well as road conditions, and driver behavior. If a safety-critical event takes place, such as harsh braking, fast acceleration or a full-on collision, the dash cam will upload the footage to a cloud server for easy reviewing.
Video telematics provides even more helpful information by augmenting insights from conventional telematics with additional analytics.
Telematics and Artificial Intelligence
Dash cams with artificial intelligence (AI) can actually monitor hazards on the road and provide real-time alerts for changing traffic conditions or potential collisions. These systems have camera sensors that recognize pedestrians, vehicle lanes, and distances to other vehicles.
In the event of an accident, the dash cam footage is recorded, stored in the cloud, categorized, and easily searchable. The footage leading up to the accident, during the incident, and after everything happened can be used to exonerate a driver from false claims. The telematics portion of the dash cam will capture the speed at which the driver was traveling, while the video recording will show exactly what happened.
Video telematics with AI and machine learning also flags important moments, making it easier to coach driving habits and reward good driving.
How Fleet Dash Cams Impact Insurance Costs
While adding dash cams to your fleet likely won’t provide instant savings, many insurance companies offer premium discounts or credits. Fleets that have safety programs in place, with dash cameras, can reduce the likelihood of an accident and avoid false claims and costly litigation processes.
Here are some of the key factors that contribute to dash cameras lowering fleet insurance rates.
Evidence For Insurance Claims
In the event of an accident, commercial drivers will likely face scrutiny. Even when a driver does everything correctly, they can still find themselves with a claim filed against them.
This can have significant financial and legal consequences, even when there is no substantial evidence in the case. However, a dash camera can show exactly what the driver did or did not do leading up to the accident, as well as after the collision.
This footage can be crucial in finding fault liability. It can also help with the process of completing an insurance claim faster and more accurately as well. Video footage from dash cams will block the chance of a sudden premium increase as well.
Lowered Legal Fees
Fleet companies and their insurance providers could end up spending a lot of money defending their position in the aftermath of an accident. Inherently, mounting a defense is often very expensive.
But when you have evidence in the form of footage captured by a dash cam, cases are often resolved faster. Dash camera footage can be viewed easily, instantly, and even remotely, to prove what happened. Removing the need for lawyers and their fees to be involved. The money you will save by not having to pay legal fees will cover the costs of dash cams.
Safety programs are integral for effective fleet management and risk reduction. Dash cams can monitor and score a wide range of driving behaviors. Fleet managers can then use the scores and videos of safety-critical events to coach driving habits and reward drivers. Drivers who get bonuses or raises based on driving behavior tend to have safer driving records, too.
Monitoring hazards on the road is also important for drivers and fleets alike. The in-cab alerts from the dash cam and its accompanying artificial intelligence software provide drivers with valuable feedback that can potentially save lives.
Some dangerous driving activities that fleet managers can rely on a dash camera to capture include the following:
- Tailgating other vehicles
- Making dangerous lane changes
- Eating or smoking
- Performing unnecessary fast acceleration
- Engaging in dangerous cornering
Lowering Fleet Expenses and Improving Safety
Implementing dash cameras into your fleet can both lower fleet expenses and improve driver safety. Fleet insurance premiums are based on many factors, including driving history and safety features. Adding a dash camera can lower insurance costs while coaching drivers and encouraging safe driving behavior.
While there are no requirements that say you must tell your insurance company that you have a dash cam, you should consider sharing this detail with your insurance company because it could lead to lower insurance premiums.
Yes, dash cams are a good investment because they can lower insurance premiums, save money on legal fees in case of an accident and lead to safer driving behavior. An accident-related lawsuit can negatively impact your bottom line and your company’s reputation.
The best place to put a dash cam is the center of your windshield. However, multiple cameras in and around the truck will provide a more complete picture.