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A new study conducted recently by British scientists has shown that HGV drivers drive much more safely when there are cameras in their cabs monitoring their behaviour.

Computer scientists and driving psychologists from the University of Nottingham analysed data collected before and after the installation of unobtrusive cameras in the cabs of Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGV). The analysis shows that there is a significant reduction of risky driving behaviours with camera monitoring and that this is even more effective when coupled with coaching, states the University in a press release.

Driving errors and violations are the leading determinants of a dangerous driving style. The research by British scientists highlights the safety implications of risky driving styles and the influence of driver-monitoring technologies in improving driving behaviour.

The researchers analysed the largest dataset ever undertaken for this type of research, looking at 669 HGVs for the longest period of time ever investigated – June 2017 to August 2019. They analysed three safety-critical telematics incidents:

– harsh braking,

– harsh cornering,

– over speeding incidents.

The study included the use of the cameras alone and cameras combined with appropriate training for drivers on the risks and consequences of their driving style.

The data showed that monitoring and educating drivers significantly reduces driving errors: harsh-braking by 16%, over-speeding by 34% and harsh-cornering by 31%. Without the coaching these percentages dropped to 4%, 28% and 13%.

As drivers are made aware of their monitoring especially with the use of cameras, they become conscious and improve their driving behaviours. With the affordability of in-vehicle cameras, the government can enforce policies that enables all HGV companies to install cameras in their vehicles for safety purposes. We are aware of the privacy concerns with collecting and storing videos of drivers, however, experts in data privacy can guide decision makers on how to efficiently implement such policies,” said Jimiama Mosima Mafeni Mase, PhD researcher with the Horizon Centre for Doctoral Training at the University of Nottingham and co-author of the research.

Photo credit @Trans.INFO

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