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Brigade Electronics discusses the future of commercial vehicle safety systems

Connectivity, artificial intelligence and telematics are all set to be big for vehicle technology and safety in the future. Peter Squire, Managing Director of Brigade Electronics UK, shares his thoughts.

How is technology making a difference to fleet managers and operators?

Times have changed considerably since the pandemic. Social distancing and remote working have meant there has been a real surge in interest in connected services products.

The benefit of Cloud-based services, is that fleet operators working from home or unable to be in the office, for example, can still access data remotely rather than having to physically enter the vehicle to obtain information.

These days, fleet operators want to have access to as much information as possible about their vehicles. This includes things like locating the vehicle, fuel efficiency warnings and any incidents that might have occurred. Footage is crucial in determining the context of a collision and who is at fault.

Hardwired digital recording systems offer stability and reliability so that fleet operators know they can immediately access information as required – even if they are at home.

What changes do you expect in the future for commercial vehicle safety systems?

Operators are looking for a complete solution – information is vital. Therefore, the merging of telematics and video data is very important. Historically, these would be standalone elements. What fleet operators now want is two systems that are integrated and can talk to each other and exchange information. The benefit of this will be that systems will work seamlessly together.

Is Brigade developing anything to streamline the fleet management process?

Brigade is working on introducing more connectivity and intelligent systems to improve vehicle safety by making sure technology aids the driver. These will use things like facial inflections to determine whether, for example, drivers are fatigued, using mobile phones at the wheel regularly or eating while driving. The system will alert operators to check on drivers and take any necessary action.

We are also working on using AI to develop lane departure warning systems that will aid drivers with keeping vehicles in a straight line.

The goal is to create ‘all things connected’. This means utilising Brigade’s existing digital recording systems and linking other technologies to it that are powered by the Cloud.

What are your hopes for improving road and workplace safety in relation to ‘all things connected’?

AI is a massive leap forward for road safety. For example, the driver status monitoring is important for maintaining safety as it will help to ensure drivers aren’t distracted. Having an alert and the ability to mark the recordings means fleet operators can be immediately alerted to a potential issue and check on the well-being of their drivers. It also means there will be a greater amount of accountability.

What about privacy issues for drivers?

AI for commercial vehicle safety systems should be seen solely as a monitoring device. It won’t record a driver’s physical face but will analyse a driver’s movements and patterns to produce auto-alerts.

The safety of drivers and other road users is paramount and such systems give operators and drivers the power to prevent incidents and fatalities from occurring. Recorders can also be switched off at certain times, for example, if the ignition is turned off or a driver’s shift ends. CCTV isn’t a new concept – it is there to protect people rather than spy on them.

What does the market say about digital recording systems?

Customers are very impressed with it. They find it easy to use, simple to operate and love that it provides the information they need to do their jobs more effectively. They can access information from anywhere at any time.

One customer, who was involved in an incident that sadly resulted in a fatality, said:

“The footage we received was absolutely crucial to determining the cause [of the incident]. The police were extremely grateful we could send it to them within a matter of hours – something they mentioned doesn’t happen very often.”

Information is time critical – having services that enable operators to access footage, download it and provide the evidence instantaneously is invaluable. An impartial recollection of events is also very important for grieving families who want to understand what happened. Likewise, it’s also extremely useful for drivers who aren’t at fault as it helps them to reaffirm what they did and what happened – that it was outside their control. 

For further information about Brigade and its range of commercial vehicle safety products, contact the team on 01322 420300 or email hello@brigade-electronics.com.


Published On: 21/04/2022 16:00:42


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