Kroger recently completed a four-month trial of a video telematics program. The company's interest in the technology was driven in part by increased liability incidents among its 1,200 vehicles.
The video telematics system is “exception-based,” meaning that there is video capture of excessive actions like swerving or hard braking. The system analyzes the data, and it even provides data that allows for personalized coaching to improve driving.
Although there is a general perception of driver resistance to in-cab video systems, the company found that drivers typically forgot about the camera’s presence in a week or so.
Accumulated data revealed more risky behavior than the company was previously aware of. Specifically, approximately 80 percent of overall risk was attributed to 15 percent of drivers. However, during the trial period the number of collisions was reduced by half. The use of handheld cell phones was reduced by 71 percent, and “driver unbelted” incidents were reduced by 82 percent. The latter statistic is important because unbelted drivers are in collisions more than three times more often than belted drivers.
The company also reported reduced maintenance expenses. This was attributed in part to a reduction in tires striking curbs.
System Also Recognizes Excellent Driving
The system also recognizes the achievements of drivers who exhibit driving behavior, and it provides evidence to exonerate drivers that are not responsible for accidents. Due to the success of the four-month trial, Kroger plans to initially deploy the system in cities where collision-related expenses are the highest.
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