DriveCam video has become an indispensable tool for KeHE Distributors, a natural and organic food distributor, to fight the most insidious kind of driver distraction: cognitive distraction, when the driver’s mind wanders far from the task at hand.
The DriveCam exception-based video safety program combines video capture of road incidents such as hard braking or sudden swerving, data analysis of those incidents, and personalized coaching insights to improve driving behavior. Today, Lytx helps protect more than 650,000 commercial and government fleet drivers under its DriveCam program.
KeHE adopted the DriveCam video safety program in 2013, and since then has been growing rapidly. It’s doubled the number of drivers in its fleet in two years, and is now rapidly approaching 595 drivers with a 489-vehicle fleet. As new drivers are added, new risk is introduced to the fleet.
To help mitigate that risk, KeHE incorporates information about DriveCam into its orientation for new hires, and focuses heavily on training coaches. With an approach that emphasizes fine-tuning of skills, collisions rates have been steadily decreasing, despite the growth and constant threat of distractions.
“Most kinds of distracted driving can be tackled with a combination of policy enforcement and common sense, but to solve the toughest kind of distractions—when something else is occupying the driver’s mind—we need to dig a little further,” said Greg Sikorski, director of transportation safety for KeHE, who said he uses DriveCam video and one-on-one coaching to help decrease all forms of distracted driving.
“It could be a problem at home, or thinking about the next delivery, but if you’re not thinking about driving while behind the wheel, you’re not driving safely,” said Sikorski. He and his coaches spend one-on-one time with drivers to help them become more aware of what may cause them to trigger video.
The KeHE team learned over time that a personal and positive approach to coaching nets the best, most long-lasting results. With that perspective, KeHE’s Eastern Region Transportation Safety Manager Tom Harden said he is able to chip away at unsafe behaviors, making sure drivers know that KeHE won’t give up on them.
Harden leverages the post-game tape philosophy to help coaches understand their role, and to help give perspective to drivers about why watching video clips of their driving performance is the best way to improve safe driving skills.
“We’re using education combined with the DriveCam clips to show drivers the type of distraction they’re exhibiting—visual, mechanical (manual) or cognitive—and how it leads to a driving event like late response,” said Harden. “If they can recognize the behavior, they can change it.”
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