Electronic logging devices (ELDs) are starting to generate so many data points that they can be utilized to gain better insight into the workday of truck drivers. Speaking at the recent Truckload 2021 event in Las Vegas, David Heller, vice president of government affairs with the Truckload Carriers Association, pointed out that studies indicate the average truck driver in the United States is on the road only 6.5 hours per day. Despite this limited timeframe, however, analyzing data generated from ELDs can pinpoint detention time or other specific bottlenecks that, once addressed, can boost a driver’s average miles per day.
A large team from ISAAC Instruments was in attendance at the event to discuss the company’s driver-centric ELD and fleet management solution. It helps truck drivers by pre-populating information on their in-cab device using data already available in the transportation management system (TMS), to avoid unnecessary clicks and reduce paperwork. It also contributes to efficient trip planning based on driver availability and can coach drivers about their driving performance in real time.
Telematics defends against nuclear verdicts
Insurance experts said while “nuclear verdicts,” remain a significant threat to trucking fleets, telematics and safety technology offer some protection. They agreed the data from these systems can help determine how safe a fleet or drivers are on a day-to-day basis.
Fleets that utilize these technologies to develop a safety culture are generally being rewarded with better pricing on insurance premiums. The cost of the technology is often paid back by avoiding an accident that could have resulted in a large jury verdict, all thanks to enhanced safety training.
Mark Seymour, president and CEO of Kriska Transportation, said he expects driver and equipment shortages to remain part of the trucking landscape for the foreseeable future.
Speaking on an executive panel, he recommended that fleets focus on ways to be more efficient with their existing labor and equipment pool, rather than expecting any changes in the near term.
Appearing alongside Seymour at the executive session were Robert Low, president and founder of Prime Inc., and Kevin Knight, executive chairman of the board for Knight-Swift Transportation. They all agreed the COVID-19 pandemic had helped shine a spotlight on the important role truck drivers play in the North American economy, and that the increased use of technology is helping fleets be more mindful of drivers’ needs than ever before.
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