Business owners who put quite a bit of trust in the hands of their fleet drivers to deliver on time and protect their vehicles hope something else isn’t consuming driver attention – distracted driving.
The National Highway Safety Administration reports that more than 3,000 people were killed in motor vehicle accidents as a result of distracted driving in 2017, and the number is on the rise.
This, coupled with driver shortages, increased fuel and business costs, retaining good drivers and keeping up with regulations, presents a difficult management environment for companies relying on fleets for their success.
Nationwide is launching Vantage 360 Fleet, a telematics system with a mobile monitoring feature to detect phone distraction. Offered at no additional charge to members, the mobile app, Bluetooth tag and web portal system are designed to help fleet managers identify risky driving behaviors and keep their vehicles and drivers safe, according to Nationwide.
The solution is powered by DriveWell Fleet from Cambridge Mobile Telematics (CMT). DriveWell Fleet uses mobile sensing, machine learning and behavioral science to measure and improve driving behavior.
“We are taking business owners’ ability to manage vehicles and measure behaviors in real time to the next level as fleet costs and distracted driving become more of a growing concern,” said Pete Frey, Nationwide’s director of commercial telematics. “Owners used to think that insurers would use this information against them, and it’s actually quite the opposite for Nationwide. We are coming alongside businesses to identify ways to provide them with valuable insight and strengthen the safety culture with their fleet drivers. In the process, they will have the opportunity for insurance savings as well.”
The Vantage 360 Fleet technology is powered by CMT’s windshield tag and phone sensor data collected by the driver’s app in the background. Business owners then have access to vehicle location tracking, driver performance and route insight. They also can identify drivers who are practicing safe habits or those who deviate from baseline goals.
“CMT is proud to work with Nationwide to improve safety for their drivers,” said Hari Balakrishnan, CMT’s co-founder and chief technology officer. “Our DriveWell platform has a proven track record of improving road safety by reducing distracted driving and other risk factors that lead to crashes and using telematics data for crash reconstruction and efficient claims processing. Vantage 360 Fleet will help business owners increase safety for their employees on the road.”
Nationwide will offer Vantage 360 Fleet through its agents beginning in South Carolina in July and expand to additional states through 2020.