Fatigue is a silent killer on our roads and one of New Zealand’s largest insurance companies, NZI, has joined forces with technology pioneer Seeing Machines in the war against driver fatigue in the commercial motor vehicle industry.
The Guardian System developed by Seeing Machines is a revolutionary combination of an in-cab sensor and forward-facing camera that prevents fatigue and distraction-related incidents with real-time alerts. It works in real-time, using advanced sensors and image processing technology to track the micro-movements of a driver’s eyes, facial expression and head to identity a fatigue or distraction event “We know that fatigue is the silent killer on our roads and we’re making a commitment to do something about it,” says NZI’s national manager of commercial motor, Ian Taylor. “Accidents and fatalities caused through fatigue are preventable and we want to help.”
Taylor says NZI holds a significant share of New Zealand’s commercial heavy motor market, so is on a mission to increase the uptake of this technology to help make roads safer, save lives and reduce losses for transport operators. “We’ve got 10 Seeing Machine units for NZI and Lumley customers to trial for free for six weeks at a time, so customers should just give us a call,” says Taylor.
Seeing Machines’ chief operating officer Paul Angelatos said this was an exciting opportunity to partner with a leading insurance company that shared its commitment to safety and allowed fleet owners to see the benefits for themselves.
“We thank NZI for the opportunity to bring our state-of- the-art driver safety solution to new customers in New Zealand, and to be at the forefront of reducing truck accidents.”
Seeing Machines is an Australian-developed technology company that has been widely picked up in the world’s largest and safest fleet companies. Seeing Machines says companies they’ve worked with have seen up to a 90% reduction in fatigue and distraction incidents.
In 2014, 67 people died and a further 772 were injured in road crashes involving trucks, accounting for 23% of all deaths and 7% of all reported injuries on our roads, according to the Ministry of Transport’s Trucks 2015 report.
In its 2015 Fatigue report, the Ministry stated that the more serious a crash, the more likely it was that driver fatigue was a contributing factor and the total social cost of crashes involving driver fatigue in 2014 was around $268 million. It estimated that driver fatigue is a factor in 13% of fatal crashes, 6% of serious injury crashes and 6% of minor injury crashes.
NZI and Lumley heavy motor vehicle customers interested in trialling Guardian should get in touch with NZI’s Fleet Risk Management team or go to FRM @ www.nzi.co.nz to find out more.