Poor driving impacting fleets, new safety report reveals
Three-quarters (73%) of UK fleet managers claim poor driving behaviour negatively impacts their business, including through accident rates and insurance claims as well as company reputation.
Webfleet Solutions surveyed 1,050 fleet decision-makers across Europe to measure attitudes towards road safety amongst commercial operators, including van fleets.
The results, published in the European Road Safety Report 2021 eBook, found respondents were most worried about their drivers’ habits and poor behaviour behind the wheel, specifically the use of mobile phones and other devices (71%), followed by speeding (69%), eating or drinking behind the wheel (68%), and driving while fatigued (67%).
The research also revealed high accident rates and insurance claim incidents, with 68% of UK commercial fleets involved in road collisions every year, and 61% of fleets saying that, on average, they have at least one insurance claim a month made against their company by other road users.
As well as the impacts on the business, the analysis showed 65% of operators were concerned poor driving behaviour harmed their company’s reputation.
But data-driven technology can support fleet managers to keep their drivers, vehicles and other road users safe, according to the report.
“Significant investment is being made in developing more powerful hardware and software to make vehicles safer,” said Beverley Wise, sales director UK & Ireland, Webfleet Solutions.
“Telematics, for example, can improve the safety of commercial fleets by offering powerful insights into driver behaviour. Fleet managers and decision-makers can access a range of valuable data points from each driver trip, with an overview of incidents like speeding, harsh steering, or sudden braking.
“This data can be paired with vehicle camera footage, offering fleet managers context of why these events occur. Driver-facing cameras, using Artificial Intelligence (AI), also assist in better driving by detecting various types of unsafe behaviours and alerting the driver to correct their course before an accident occurs.
“The integrated solution gives fleet managers and decision makers full transparency and clarity, allowing them to protect their drivers from non-fault claims and coach them to drive more safely.”
According to the survey, UK fleet decision-makers were most likely to have adopted reversing and side camera technology to help improve road safety (40%) and half (51%) of businesses said they were offered a lower premium if they adopted a telematics system.
“This latest research underlines the need to improve road safety of UK fleets, and the best way to achieve that is through better driving habits and improved visibility,” added Wise.
“Legislative change will certainly encourage uptake of technology in the coming years but fleet decision-makers should aim to be one step ahead and use technology and telematics to their competitive advantage.”