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5 Safety benefits of equipment telematics

Updated: Mar 11

This week, as fleet managers meet in Nashville for AEMP's 2014 Asset Management Symposium, it's a good time to take a closer look at the safety benefits of telematics. Telematics - the remote monitoring of heavy equipment using a variety of sensors and microprocessors for data collection, transmitting it via cellular or satellite-based networks, and then mining it for insights about the machine's location and health - has come a long way in the last several years. It's about to accelerate even faster, now that the Association of Equipment Management Professionals (AEMP) and the Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) have published a standard for telematics data. As more fleets are being equipped with telematics technology, a clear picture is emerging of the ways in which it can help to improve safety on busy job sites. Here are five safety benefits of telematics: 1. Monitor and correct unsafe equipment practices: Sensors can detect when an operator is speeding, doing heavy braking, driving without a seat belt, driving without lights at night and other behaviors that can compromise safety as well as shorten machine life. These warning signs can be communicated to the operator, manager or fleet owner so they can take corrective action. 2. Hard evidence to correct operator behavior: If you see operators working unsafely, talking to them can sometimes be problematic, because the operator may argue with you about their performance. Telematics gives you objective data you can use to justify why they need to change their habits to keep themselves and the other workers on your job site safe. 3. Minimize unauthorized equipment use: Telematics enable fleet owners to set up geo-fences - areas that a machine must operate within or an alert will be generated - or time fences - start and end times outside of which the machine shouldn't be operated. This can help fleet owners eliminate unauthorized equipment use. If one of your operators leaves your equipment yard with a skid steer loader and a trailer over the weekend, you'll be immediately receive an alert about it. 4. Enforce traffic management plans: Many job sites in congested urban areas require traffic management plans, to keep equipment and nearby traffic separated. If an unauthorized vehicle enters a haul road where it doesn’t belong, for example, the telematics system can alert all nearby equipment operators, helping everyone to avoid an accident. 5. Accident documentation: In the event an accident happens on your job site, telematics data can be used to determine what the machine operator was doing just before it happened. If they were operating within normal parameters, the data will show that. If you're considering investing in telematics, keep in mind that it isn't just a productivity and asset management tool. It can also help your crews to work more safely! Interested in our training products? See: Silver Series Training Programs Photo courtesy of Equipment World magazine

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