February 4, 2019 12:00 AM, EST

Extending Video Safety Beyond Exonerations

Everyone is familiar with using video to help improve driver performance and fleet safety – particularly when it comes to exonerating drivers when not at fault. Whether it be road and cab-facing, road-facing only or a 360-degree view around a vehicle, video is paramount to understanding what happened at the time of a driving incident or for capturing mystery damage. But, many fleets have found additional benefits to having video in their vehicles.

Protecting Precious Cargo

Cassens Transport, one of the oldest automotive logistics services company in the United States, recently added video safety to its entire fleet of nearly 1,200 trucks to minimize losses related to vehicle damage, as well as improve driver habits and reduce the number of actual incidents.

“Cassens Transport—and most auto haulers—are 100 percent responsible for damage to any vehicles they haul, so safety is of prime importance,” said Joshua Suhre, operations and labor manager at Cassens. “When we started to experience an increase in jury judgements against us when our drivers were not at fault, we knew we had to find a video-based safety solution to prove their innocence. Once we installed the SmartDrive program, we quickly realized that the benefits of video-based safety extend far beyond exonerations.”

“The combination of SmartDrive capabilities provides us with insight into how our customers’ vehicles are being handled and the context we need to effectively intervene with proactive driver coaching,” commented Suhre. “With comprehensive visibility to how drivers were loading and unloading the cars and trucks we are entrusted to transport, coupled with intuitive coaching workflows that enable us to easily refresh drivers’ familiarity with standard operating procedures, we have significantly reduced our losses.”

Catching a Thief Red-Handed

Video has also been found to be helpful when theft occurs. Not just theft of products and materials, but theft of actual vehicles in your fleet!

Danella installs, maintains and supports our nation’s infrastructure. It is a Pennsylvania-based provider of world-class construction services to a broad range of utility and railroad customers. Integral to Danella’s success is its strong safety culture and Zero Incident Philosophy – all incidents are preventable. Supporting this safety philosophy is the SmartDrive video-based safety system (which has reduced speeding 40%, increased seatbelt usage 79% and decreased mobile device usage 29% within the fleet).

Danella recently experienced an added benefit to having video in its vehicles when the video was used to catch a man who stole one of the company’s trucks!

“We would have lost a $20,000 truck and thousands of dollars of equipment – bags of tools, including several different sets of drills and power tools,” commented James Hensley, Danella regional safety manager. “Things could have been really bad after several of our company’s trucks were broken into and one was stolen.”

But, thanks to the company’s video safety system, the accused thief didn’t get very far.

“We were able, with the GPS, to pick up every single place where he stopped,” Hensley said. Deputies believe the driver of the stolen truck, Curt Hall, Jr., may have left some of the stolen tools at those stops. But tools weren’t the only thing missing from the business.

“He actually stole a full box of chocolate Twinkies and broke into the unopened water case and took a 20-ounce water out and was drinking it while he was joyriding around the county,” Hensley said.

Once Hall noticed the camera inside the truck, he tried to remove it, but the equipment is tamper-proof. “We would have been able to recover the vehicle without the video system, because we could have found the truck. But, without it, we would not have been able to identify him,” Hensley said.

After this incident, Hensley says he definitely recommends a video system, like SmartDrive, to other businesses with company vehicles. Suhre concurs, “From exoneration to fostering a culture of safety and improving driving habits, SmartDrive will help any fleet reduce accident frequency, cargo damage and fatalities. It’s an outstanding solution that provides immediate ROI.”

 Improving Driver Satisfaction & Retention

Some drivers need incentives, most deserve rewards. But how do you incentivize – or reward – drivers without actionable data? A video-based safety system can provide the data to help create a well-implemented driver incentive program. One that can provide a considerable positive return on investment as a result of improved driver safety and reduced accidents — while greatly enhancing driver recruitment and retention.

Founded in 1955 and headquartered in Indiana, Fraley & Schilling operates a fleet of 500 trucks – regional flatbed and dry van – in the eastern third of the United States. With safety at the forefront, and a variety of safety technologies – SmartDrive video safety, Omintracs, Vigillo and Vertical Alliance – Fraley & Schilling believes that drivers are still the most advanced technology in the truck. To that end, the company empowers drivers to always choose to do the right and safe thing every day, with accountability and compliance promoted throughout the company. Every member of the Fraley & Schilling team is expected to make safety a daily practice that starts with promoting advocacy and ends with rewarding compliance.

Realizing they could improve their incentive program, Fraley & Schilling dove into the data provided by SmartDrive SmartIQ® Analytics. As Mike Posz, Director of Safety, commented, “The in-depth reporting and key performance indicators give us the data we need to better coach our drivers and make them even safer each time they’re on the road. The SmartDrive program also allows us to recognize drivers for their professionalism in ways we haven’t been able to do previously.”

Individual Fraley & Schilling driver scorecards provide weekly updates concerning each driver’s production, SmartDrive Safety Score, CSA Score and paperwork completion. Top 5 Driving Observations are also included and inform interactive coaching sessions. Each of these components affects a driver’s weekly pay.


Driver scorecards inform drivers where they are exceeding expectations and where they can improve.

Scorecards are included with each week’s pay settlement so drivers understand the impact of safety on their weekly earnings and annual safety bonus.

Pulling data from a variety of sources, Fraley & Schilling created customized driver scorecards so drivers could track their performance and see where they excel, along with where they need to improve. With a driver scorecard in place, Fraley & Schilling was able to create a scorecard performance-based bonus program, annual safety bonuses and recognition rewards. The results of their integrated data-driven program speak for themselves:

• 55% reduction in accident frequency rate

• 50% reduction in DOT Recordable Accidents

• 10% reduction in self-insured retention costs

• $2 million added to bottom line since implementing SmartDrive

• Equals more money in the drivers’ pockets

To learn how to create your own driver rewards program that delivers results, download the ebook.

Improving Effectiveness and Efficiency Throughout Your Fleet

Smart fleets around the country are quickly realizing that video is about more than just exonerations. They’ve quickly learned that there’s no better solution for enforcing corporate standard operating procedures, lowering workers claims costs, lowering insurance costs, improving fuel efficiency, deterring theft and solving for mystery damage than a video safety program. In addition, they are increasing their ROI by using the data that’s inherently available to them from their video safety program and creating programs to retain drivers while using the video to protect their assets … and those of their customers.  Schedule a demo and learn how the SmartDrive systems is more than just video.  


SmartDrive Systems, the recipient of Frost & Sullivan’s Customer Value Leadership Award for Video Safety Solutions gives fleets and drivers unprecedented driving performance insight and analysis, helping save fuel, expenses and lives. Its video analysis, predictive analytics and personalized performance program help fleets improve driving skills, lower operating costs and deliver significant ROI. With an easy-to-use managed service, fleets and drivers can access and self-manage driving performance anytime, anywhere. The company, which is ranked as one of the fastest growing companies by Deloitte’s Technology Fast 500™, has compiled the world’s largest storehouse of more than 240 million analyzed risky-driving events. SmartDrive Systems is based in San Diego, and employs over 725 people worldwide.


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