Driver Check, the company responsible for many of the “How am I driving?” stickers on South African roads, has announced a partnership with MiX Telematics. Fleet operators who are Driver Check members will now have the option of having their vehicles fitted with telematics technology that tracks driver and vehicle behavior.

More than 14,000 vehicles countrywide are currently branded with Driver Check bumper stickers, backed by a 24/7 call center that motorists can use to report unsafe road use. Gail Robertson, managing director for Driver Check, noted the deal with MiX Telematics will supplement this information with real-time monitoring and tracking data that will give fleet managers far better insights into driver behavior.

Gert Pretorius, managing director of MiX Telematics (Africa Fleet Solutions), said an increasing number of businesses are looking for new ways of promoting a safer driving culture, with driver safety technology emerging as a strong solution to change driver behavior for the better. Research shows that between 80 percent and 95 percent of vehicle accidents are caused by human error, according to MiX Telematics.

“On-board telematics available today monitors driving behavior and offer real-time feedback to drivers, so they can instantly change their driving style. The technology also gives fleet managers and owners a complete analysis of risky maneuvers, such as hard acceleration, braking, turns, and speed,” said Pretorius. “This kind of information allows specific recommendations on training to be made for individual drivers, resulting in lower accidents and liability, and helping manage the risks associated with work-related driving.”

Driver Check’s 24-hour hotline is currently manned by trained consultants who take calls from motorists, manage angry reactions from motorists where needed, and then document observations of the incident. Robertson said Driver Check members who implement the fleet management solution available from MiX Telematics will be able to supplement their incident reports with exact details of vehicle conditions at the time of the incident, even going as far as providing video footage recorded in the cab of the truck and on the road ahead. This information will provide the fleet manager the opportunity to improve on unsafe driving habits displayed by drivers, with a view to remedying the situation.

“This information not only enables businesses to identify safety improvements, but better driving styles also mean more economical driving,” said Robertson.