Martin Preferred Foods deploys SmartDrive video-based program

Martin Preferred Foods deploys SmartDrive video-based program

Tim Boyle/Getty Images News

SmartDrive Systems, a provider of driving performance solutions that reduce collisions and improve fuel efficiency, announced that Houston TX-based Martin Preferred Foods has deployed SmartDrive’s video-based safety program across its fleet.
With the goal of improving fleet safety and ensuring driver compliance with company safety policies, in the first six months after implementation of the SmartDrive solution, Martin Preferred Foods saw a 46% improvement in its fleet safety score, 68% reduction in distracted-driving instances, and 82% drop in drivers failing to fasten their seatbelts. The company aims to achieve a safety score consistent with “best in class” carriers within the industry, by the end of 2015.
Martin Preferred Foods has delivered proteins and specialty foods to customers in the Houston, Dallas, Austin, and San Antonio TX metropolitan areas for more than 70 years. While operating its fleet safely is a priority for the company, the introduction of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) program presented an opportunity to refocus on technologies to further improve fleet safety and protect drivers.
The company’s leaders sought a solution to help ensure not only that drivers were adhering to laws and policies on speeding, seat belt usage, and distracted driving, but also that could help them proactively assess risk even in the absence of violations in these areas.
“In my experience, there are a number of stories that get told—by the driver, bystanders, and others—when there is a collision, and often these stories can be contradictory,” said Scott Fry, director of transportation at Martin Preferred Foods. “Video is the best witness in any situation and can help determine a single truth.”
“I have previously worked with a competitor so I was familiar with their technology and service. The level of customer serviced we received from SmartDrive has been superior,” said Fry. “The SmartDrive team took the time to understand our business, and their customer success team was effectively an extension of our own safety team. We have a shared set of objectives and we’re all striving for aggressive, measurable results as we look towards achieving a best in class safety score of below 100.”
Martin Preferred Foods’ leaders recognized a number of benefits from SmartDrive’s video-based safety program. By capturing footage daily, they were able to identify poor driving performance that had previously been overlooked simply because a driver had not had an accident. They also realized that video provided a basis for stronger connections between management and drivers: By better understanding what was happening day-to-day in the vehicle cab, fleet managers were better equipped to have fair and consistent conversations about driver performance that may have compromised safety and increased risk of a serious incident.
SmartDrive’s video-based safety program identifies unsafe driving with an extensible platform that captures video, vehicle, audio, and driving data, and automatically offloads footage for expert review and analysis, providing a clear picture of what happened on the road. The platform identifies a fleet’s best-performing drivers, as well as those who need coaching to improve specific skills.
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