- Fleets use new methods of spotting negligence and abuse
- Policing through video reduces costs and improves safety
- Fleet managers can view live video images by Bluetooth
Drivers are ignoring vehicle maintenance warning signs - particularly in relation to tyre and brake wear - with fatal consequences, according to Fleet Support Group (FSG).
FSG chairman Geoffrey Bray says businesses may have established maintenance policies outlined in driver handbooks, but they are frequently being ignored by employees.
Video evidence from FSG's Masterview system reveals how company car and van drivers abuse their vehicles and has uncovered a 'chamber of horrors', says Bray.
'We have many examples of evidence filmed by members of our garage network of employees who have ignored clear signs that maintenance is required on the vehicle they are driving,' he said.
'Companies may think they have a vehicle maintenance policy in place, but it is not being followed by drivers in many cases. The images we see regularly on Masterview highlight that this is a major problem.'
The system is live in 125 dealers close to where the majority of Fleet Support Group's customers' vehicles are located.
Fleet managers signed up to the service can view video remotely either in real time or recorded for later viewing.
Bray added: 'Masterview has highlighted numerous horror stories to fleet managers as to exactly what damage drivers are causing to company vehicles.
On viewing the live pictures fleet managers are often shocked at the condition of some of their vehicles. They then use Masterview to police the situation.
'The technology particularly comes into its own when vehicles are located away from where fleet managers can undertake their own vehicle inspections.'
Network Rail uses FSG for SMR work across its fleet of more than 8,500 light commercial vehicles and company cars.
Head of fleet Chuck Ives said: 'Our task is to eliminate risk through tight controls and effective management.
'By adopting a zero tolerance maintenance attitude across our fleet we have achieved a 30 per cent reduction in accidents and a significant drop in fleet costs.
'Driver culture has changed as a result. They know their vehicles are being monitored and acknowledge the need for regular maintenance. All vehicle fleets should adopt this common sense approach to vehicle maintenance.'