Dash cam technology benefits both commercial and everyday motorists and has for more than a decade. Today, many fleets use the same kinds of standard dash cams that have been in use since around 2010. Other fleets are taking advantage of newer dash cam upgrades, such as those brought to field service companies from Azuga.
But what's next on the horizon for dash cams for fleets? Artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, and the Internet of Things (IoT) have made their way into many areas of fleet management. These technologies are revolutionizing field service management software, electronic logging devices (ELDs), and so much more. But today, the newest uses of fleet AI are making their way into dash cams for truck drivers and other fleet vehicle operators.
Traditional Dash Cams Versus AI-Powered Dash Cams
Typically, traditional dash cams will only begin filming when alerted that an accident or other dangerous event underway. They do this by keeping track of events like harsh braking, heavy acceleration, sharp or rapid cornering, and other hard driving practices.
However, AI-powered dash cams use something called "computer vision" to continually capture and interpret scenes outside of the vehicle, as well as what the operator may be doing at all times. AI dash cams will record all events occurring inside and outside the vehicle for the entire duration of a route, but how do fleet managers determine which times to review and keep for later use, such as fighting a lawsuit or an insurance claim?
The key is not so much the dash cam itself these days — it is the AI software that distills hours of footage down into a usable record of critical events. With real-time processing, an AI dash cam (and the software that operates it) can tell you exactly when something went wrong — even when there was no resulting accident or lawsuit.
What's more, AI dash cams for truck drivers and other fleet vehicle operators can alert drivers when they veer off the road, brake too harshly, or take too sharp a turn. And, if they continue to engage in these hard driving behaviors, the same AI dash cam can notify fleet managers back at the office, ensuring the safety of the entire fleet 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
AI Dash Cams Promote Enhanced Driver Safety
Because they are always on, and because they offer alerts for drivers and fleet managers, AI dash cams can significantly improve driver safety. As mentioned above, dash cams powered by artificial intelligence can send alerts when drivers make common hard driving errors or otherwise engage in aggressive driving.
AI-powered dash cams can also alert drowsy drivers and even detect behaviors associated with drunk driving or driving under the influence of other substances. Behaviors like harsh braking out of nowhere, nearly driving off the road, erratic lane changes, and driving far below the speed limit can be indicators of driving under the influence. AI dash cams can capture these behaviors, save the videos, and send them directly to the fleet manager.
This technology also promotes road safety because drivers know they are there — and this makes them operate commercial motor vehicles with significantly more caution.
The Many Uses of AI-Powered Dash Cams
AI dash cams allow fleet managers to be much more proactive about the safety of the drivers under their charge, thanks in large part to all of the notifications and alerts they can send out. But it isn't just driver safety that should be a concern, although of course, human life should be at the top of the list.
Other important things to consider when it comes to safety are the inventory and other assets your drivers or technicians transport. When we consider that in 2017, the US Department of Labor and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) estimated more than $20 billion in financial losses in assets, we begin to understand the importance of using AI-powered dash cams.
Not only do these modern dash cams allow for up-to-the-minute driver and asset safety, but they also provide an immensely useful record of events in the cab and outside the vehicle that can be a great help during driver training.
To learn more about AI dash cams and how they can enhance the safety of your fleet drivers, have a look at Azuga’s dual-facing dash cam with innovative cloud-based AI monitoring system, complete with our GPS fleet tracking bundle.