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Teletrac Navman: Keeping a keen eye with AI

Teletrac Navman’s AI camera technology can detect and alert when road incidents and accidents occur.

Teletrac Navman’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) enabled cameras are helping to increase the safety, performance and productivity of commercial drivers and vehicles.

According to the Bureau of Infrastructure and Transport Research Economics, 1187 people died on Australian roads in 2022, the highest number since 2017.

Statistics suggest a trend of increasingly frequent road incidents nationwide. 

James French, Construction Solution Specialist at Teletrac Navman, says technology has a major role to play in reducing risk and improving road conditions.

“We usually make an assumption that the vehicles performance is a fair reflection of the driver’s performance,” French says.

“Modern technology can provide an auditable trail which can show what the driver has seen. Everybody might jump up and down and blame the driver, but when you review the data alongside video footage, it may not be the driver, but instead someone else pulled out in front of them.”

The development of Artificial Intelligence (AI) enabled smart cameras, or ‘dashcams’, are among the latest in safety technology for fleet managers.

Teletrac Navman launched its ‘Smart Dashcam’ in February 2022, a driver-facing camera that combines telematics and sensors to detect and alert in real-time.

French says the journey to the Smart Dashcam has been years in the making.

“Teletrac Navman has been working on a camera concept for quite some time. In a saturated market we aimed to have a point of difference in the solution,” he says. 

“We wanted to take this technology a step further. It’s in line with our view as a company, of trying to push the industry and technology innovations forward.

“Over these years we’ve been working on a solution that gives fleet managers and others in the industry the ability to keep a track and view events as they unfold, from the comfort of their own office.”


 

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James French, Construction Solution Specialist at Teletrac Navman.
James French, Construction Solution Specialist at Teletrac Navman.

Improving behaviours 

A large focus during the development of Teletrac Navman’s Smart Dashcam was the capacity to improve the behaviours and performance of drivers. 

But how can such technology be used to influence change? 

For French, the first step is providing actionable objectives, as well as analytics to review performance.

“This push towards AI-enabled cameras is to see what the driver is doing, to give you a greater indication of the driver’s performance,” French says.

“The Smart Dashcam can provide a personalised coaching programme for drivers based on mistakes, direct from the camera itself, rather than stats and tables of information that you need to dissect and analyse yourself. 

“This system is designed to tell you where things are lacking from a habit and behaviour perspective and transform these habits into positive behaviours.”

The Smart Dashcam’s dashboard contains a scorecard, as well as an alerts and recognition system. 

The scorecard is a means to reward positive behaviours from drivers, to encourage improvement while increasing productivity and performance. Using a mixture of performance and safety metrics, these scores can help fleet managers to benchmark where the optimal yet safe scores should be and help them coach their drivers.  

The alerts and recognition system can prevent incidents from occurring in real time thanks to in-built audio alerts for the driver.

“These alerts are all about safety,” French says. “You’ll get alerts if the system detects speeding, aggressive braking, if the driver’s showing signs of distraction, or if the driver reaches for his/her mobile phone.”

The system can also detect lane departure, forward collision warnings, tailgating and other driver distractions.

These incidents can then be backed up with video footage, recorded on the dual 1080p, 30 frames-per-second high-definition camera.

Video telematics help to send these alerts, which directs the camera to record and keep the footage leading up to, during and after the incident.

“If an event is triggered you have the visual data to back it up,” French says. “If there’s a speed event or fatigue related incident, fleet managers can see the footage to justify what’s happened to figure out exactly what did or didn’t go wrong.”

On top of being able to view incidents in real time, fleet managers can also access and download footage remotely. 

Always learning 

Just like the drivers themselves, the AI technology used by the Smart Dashcam is constantly gathering additional data on performance patterns.

French says that for an example of a business where a crash may occur every 400 days, patterned learning provided by AI can help to predict and better mitigate these future incidents.

“The AI technology can start to see trends and this information becomes part of a predictive analysis,” French says. “We’re constantly working on improvements to the AI engine build, to ensure that it can continue to learn from people on the road.”

French says the real strength of the Smart Dashcam is its ability to provide a variety of services from a single source.

“There’s isn’t much out there in the form of a single system that can do everything for fleet managers from the get-go. All they need to do is jump on board, then the system can help to make these changes, while also providing better coaching, training and safety outcomes,” French says.

“Having a single entity means the users don’t need to use different software packages. It’s a complete solution.”

Teletrac Navman is looking to make further enhancements to the Smart Dashcam model to advance its capabilities as a predictive analysis tool, through improvements to its AI engine, as well as the range of in-built alert metrics. 

This article was originally published in the May edition of our magazine. To read the magazine, click here.

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