We are often asked about where fleet operators can place the cameras in their rigid trucks. There are many options, which are based on 4 key considerations: Recording of journey footage, driver safety, public safety and vehicle security.
So, let’s look at these options in turn:
When an incident occurs, you will want to have the footage to help you defend claims. This is the main reason that fleet operators fit cameras to their rigid trucks. The best configuration to meet this need includes a forward-facing camera (fitted just at the top of the windscreen, where the rear-view mirror would normally be), two side cameras (fitted on the near-side and off-side of the cab facing backwards along the body of the truck), and also a rear camera (which can be installed either low down by the bottom rail or high up above the rear doors).
The exact choice of rear camera will depend on the configuration of equipment used on the rear of the truck and the primary purpose for the rear camera. For example, if you have a tail-lift or the truck carries a detachable forklift, then a bottom camera is not possible. But if you wish to monitor the rear of the truck looking down, then a top camera is perfect.
Many fleet managers think that a single forward ‘dashcam’ type camera will suffice for a truck, but there are many reasons why this just isn’t the case. Have a read of these two articles and you’ll understand why:
In summary, if your primary purpose for fitting camera to your truck is protecting your fleet and managing risk, then you need at least front, two sides and rear cameras.
Rigid truck drivers often drive in and around cities and can be subject to abuse, road rage and physical attacks. In this case, all the cameras around the vehicle will not help if the driver is attacked in the cab.
If this is a concern for you, a dome camera installed inside the cab can capture the space and record anything untoward that happens.
A by-product of this is that, in the event of an accident, the driver will have evidence to show that they were paying attention to the road and were not on the phone or distracted in some other way.
Of course, the very presence of in-cab cameras has been shown to have a marked reduction in incidences of accidents caused by distraction and mobile use. So this is a win-win for fleet managers.
Rigid Trucks, especially those over 7.5 Tonnes, can have significant blind spots. In cities and congested areas these can cause difficulties for drivers. The use of side-scan technologies and turn alerts can help the driver to know that cyclists and other road users are in the blind-spot, but frankly, nothing can beat actually seeing the area for yourself.
In this case, a rear camera and a blind-spot camera (placed on the near side, just at the top of the cab, facing down), plus an in-cab monitor (that automatically switches to the required view when reversing or indicating), will instantly give the driver peace-of-mind that the area is clear and they can complete the manouver with confidence.
The nature of trucks is that they carry a large amount of goods. This makes them a prime target for thieves and because of their space, can also be susceptible to stowaways. Cameras around and in the vehicle act as both deterrents and for evidence gathering.
Any camera system that does not have night vision is pointless. Additionally, you should look at a system that has ‘Delayed Switch-Off’. This allows the system to continue recording even when the engine is turned off. ProVision’s systems can be configured to run for up to 24 hours without engine power. Combined with night vision and signage on the vehicle, you have a powerful deterrent.
Obviously if you want to deter then the more cameras the better.
If the thief persists and breaks into the vehicle, you’ll want to be sure you record what they get up to. Cameras can therefore be placed in the cab and also in the load space. Dome cameras can be placed strategically to cover the door areas, ensuring they get a front-on view of the thief.
Additional to the cameras, ProVision DVR units accept multiple data inputs that will trigger ‘events’. This can include alarm, doors opening, tailgate operating, reverse gear and indicators, among others. This allows you, the fleet manager to be immediately notified every time the van doors are opened, say outside of normal hours and in turn this creates an event recording for review.