Stop Driver Distraction: How to Save Your Drivers and Your Business

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Did you know that distracted driving is considered the leading cause of road accidents in Singapore? 

Accidents can, unfortunately, happen to anyone, but they shouldn’t happen because you aren’t focused on the road and your surroundings while driving. 

Click here to find out how to eliminate distracted driving and discover how Cartrack is the ideal choice for keeping your drivers safe and alert behind the wheel

In this article, you will:

  • Find out what distracted driving is
  • Define the three main distractions on the road
  • Explore the dangers and penalties of distracted driving for your fleet
  • Learn how a driver monitoring system is your key to safe driving
  • Discover why Cartrack is the leader in providing driver monitoring systems for your fleet

Unpacking distracted driving

Distracted driving occurs when a driver isn’t focused on the road. And, the smallest things can become distractions. Just last year, Singapore recorded 6,944 road accidents that resulted in injuries, a 2.4% increase from the previous year. While we don’t know how many of them are because of distracted driving, we can’t shy away from it being the leading cause of road accidents in Singapore. This makes it important for fleets to identify and address distracted driving before it boils over into a more serious issue.

The top 3 road distractions to look out for

So you know what distracted driving is, but did you know there are different types of distractions? If not, don’t worry, because we’re here to dish the details on them:

  1. Visual distractions:

    Did you have to take your eyes off the road for even a split second? Then that’s what we call a visual distraction. This can be looking at an accident or texting your kids to remind them to take the chicken out of the freezer for dinner.
  2. Manual distractions:

    Did you have to let go of your steering wheel to do it? Then it’s a manual distraction. This can be changing the radio station, adjusting your seat while driving, or taking a sip of your iced coffee.
  3. Cognitive distractions:

    Are you thinking of the thousand things you have to do before the end of the day? Do deadlines have your mind in the clouds? Cognitive distraction takes your mental focus far away from the road, leaving you distracted and unprepared for sudden incidents that may come your way.

These lead to collisions, injuries, and vehicle damage. The Singapore government understands the severe risks of distracted driving, and that’s why they’re making moves to keep driving safe and regulated. Let’s find out how.

How is safe driving being prioritised in Singapore?

The Land Transport Authority has introduced rules and regulations that help drivers behave safely on the road. These include speed limits, parking restrictions, and road signs. 

They’re also attacking the one thing people will feel, and that’s their wallet. We’re unpacking the three main penalties that you could pay if you don’t stay on your best behaviour behind the wheel:

  • Death: A S$10,000 fine, eight-year driver's licence suspension, or up to three years’ imprisonment
  • Grievous injury: A S$5,000, five-year driver's licence suspension, or up to two years of imprisonment
  • Injury due to irresponsible driving: A S$2,500 fine, or up to one year of imprisonment

These penalties are for first-time offenders who weren’t under the influence during the offense. If alcohol and repeated behaviour are added to the mix, penalties are considerably harsher.

How is safe driving being prioritised in Singapore

Rewarding good driver behaviour

But while the country’s authorities call out the bad, it also celebrates and incentivises good driving behaviour. The Singapore Road Safety Council (SRSC) was created to promote safety awareness in Singapore. They do this by running various road campaigns, like the Singapore Safety Awards, that recognise companies with exceptional drivers for their contribution to road safety. By rewarding safe driving, both drivers and companies are inspired to be safe and responsible in their driving. 

We’re human, so distractions are inevitable. What you should be doing is limiting those distractions so they don’t turn into costly collisions. It’s all about preparation, as this helps you drive safely and stay focused. But why should this be your focus? Let’s get into the impact of distracted driving on your fleet.

The impact of distracted driving on your fleet

Distracted driving is dangerous, and the negative impact is on different parts of your fleet. Let’s find out what these are:

  1. It damages fleet vehicles:

    When one of your vehicles is involved in an accident, it needs to be repaired as quickly as possible so your operations aren’t affected. But here’s the thing: vehicle repairs don’t pay for themselves. Dipping into your fleet's budget to fund unexpected repairs impacts your profits and overall operations, which is never a good thing. This can be even more expensive if the vehicle is a complete write-off, creating unwanted risks and severe financial issues.
  2. It affects your company’s reputation

    There’s a popular quote that goes, “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and 5 minutes to ruin it.” When it comes to distracted driving, all it takes is 5 seconds. If one of your drivers is involved in an accident where distracted driving is at play, it reflects on all your drivers. We live in such a social media-driven world that the moment this happens, the whole world knows in minutes. This paints your fleet as unreliable and not trustworthy, leading to you losing valuable customers.
  3. You can face costly lawsuits

    Accidents never just end on the road because you still have to handle insurance claims and lawsuits from the motorists who were affected. If your drivers played a role in someone being injured or their vehicle being significantly damaged, the responsibility is in your hands.
  4. It impacts productivity

    Distracted driving causes accidents that lead to unplanned downtime in your fleet. Whether you own two or 20 trucks, you will still feel the impact of one of them not being operational. This means customers won’t receive their deliveries on time and your pick-ups won’t be on schedule, painting your business in a bad light. When this happens, customer satisfaction is negatively affected, inevitably impacting your company's reputation.
  5. It affects business growth

    If your fleet’s focus is always damage control, then there’s no room to improve your fleet. This means you can’t invest in more vehicles, grow your team, or set bigger goals for your fleet because all your money is going toward medical bills, vehicle repairs, and legal proceedings.
  6. Your insurance premiums skyrocket

    Car insurance prices are calculated by looking at risk. What this means is that, if accidents in your fleet are more common than trees in a forest, your insurance payments will be way higher. And it doesn’t have to be a major accident, because a minor bump can also impact insurance rates. Higher insurance premiums mean you’ll be digging deeper into your fleet’s wallet, affecting its profitability and opportunity for growth.

So how can your drivers avoid distracted driving?

Is the nerve-wracking thoughts of heavy fines and even imprisonment pushing you to want your drivers to avoid distracted driving? To do this, you need to know what actions they need to take to avoid distracted driving. Let’s find out what they are.

  • Prep your GPS before you leave:

    Do you find yourself putting your destination into the GPS while you’re already on the road? This is dangerous because you’re not focused on what’s happening around you. Input your address before beginning your journey so your main focus can be driving safely with no distractions.
  • Put the cell phone down:

    You may pride yourself on being able to multitask, but we promise you that text messages aren’t going to run away because you’re not able to look at them immediately. Cell phone use takes your eyes off the road, making it one of the most dangerous behaviours you can engage in behind the wheel. But if it’s urgent, find a safe place to park your vehicle and look at your phone without risking your life.
  • Stay away from the radio dial:

    We know you don’t like K-pop, so the moment it starts playing, you want to change the station. But those few seconds of being distracted and focusing on that screen can be risky and potentially cause a costly collision.
  • Lower your music’s volume:

    Having a karaoke session sounds like fun, but it shouldn’t be at the risk of other motorists. When your music is too loud, your complete focus isn’t on the road. This distraction makes you a danger to other drivers on the road.
  • Avoid eating in your vehicle:

    That morning caffeine and sugar boost can leave you feeling more awake and productive. But this doesn’t mean you should get it while driving. Taking sips of coffee or a bite of your kaya behind the wheel are big distractions. By taking your focus off the road, these actions make you a risk to other motorists and their safety.

These are all steps your drivers can implement, but what can you, as a fleet manager, do to empty their plate a bit? It’s really simple: Get a driver monitoring system.

So how can your drivers avoid distracted driving

What can you do as a fleet manager?

The best gift you can give your drivers is a driver monitoring system (DMS). These are more than just CCTV cameras. They are vehicle safety systems created to monitor your driver’s safety when they’re behind the wheel. What makes them so amazing is how they continuously monitor driver behaviour and actions. For them to effectively do this, they use cameras, perhaps the most important part of a DMS. This camera is mounted where it can monitor driver behaviour. 

But that’s not all, because a DMS is equipped with sensors and advanced AI algorithms. These help the system accurately pinpoint distracted driving in real time. This helps your fleet:

This is the peak of fleet safety. Sounds incredible, right? And it could be your fleet’s reality because we’re sharing the secret formula: It’s Cartrack’s driver monitoring system.

Need a solution? Call on Cartrack

Keeping an eye on all of your drivers can be a hassle, but if you have the right solution, it’s easy peasy. Cartrack has that solution, helping you keep your drivers and fleet safe at all times. Let’s get into the how:

  • Live Vision AI cameras

    Get ready for 24-hour visual access to all your fleet vehicles with our AI-powered, live-streaming technology: Live Vision AI cameras. This cloud-connected video management solution uses AI-equipped cameras to help you monitor distracted driver behaviour in real time, at any time. These cameras can detect different forms of distracted driving, including:

    - Yawning and other signs of fatigue, cell phone use, and even smoking.

    But that’s not all, because when these are detected, your drivers are immediately notified, thanks to in-cabin audible alerts. This helps them quickly correct their behaviour, preventing costly accidents. As a fleet manager, you also receive real-time alerts on distracted behaviour, and have access to the footage through a live stream feed.
  • ADAS

    Give your drivers a heightened awareness of their surroundings with our Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). This system uses artificial intelligence (AI), camera-based sensors, and intelligent algorithms to alert your drivers to potential road hazards. An example of this is the following distance. When you’re distracted behind the wheel, you may not be aware that you’re driving too close to the vehicle in front of you. So when this system detects that a driver is too close to another vehicle, they receive an alert and know to maintain a safe following distance from it.
  • Driver scorecards

    Spotting distracted driving is one part of the puzzle because now you have to implement a plan to stop it. Our driver scorecards can help you with this. These scorecards rate each driver based on how safely they drive by monitoring signs of distracted driving, such as:

    - Harsh braking and cornering, sudden acceleration, and speeding.

    With these detailed insights into driver performance, you can easily spot which areas each driver needs to improve to achieve safe driver behaviour.

Keep your drivers safe and efficient behind the wheel with Cartrack Singapore

Distracted driving can be the end-all of your fleet, and you don’t want this. 

Contact us today and let’s keep your drivers attentive, your operations safe, and your entire fleet the safest on the block.

Distracted driving is a leading cause of road accidents in Singapore. Discover how Cartrack helps keep your drivers safe & alert behind the wheel.