Kjell Anderton, director, TrackCompare.co.uk

Survey identifies rush to install cameras

Fleet Focus Pro: this high performance CCTV system records video, GPS and GForce data, and provides the driver with good manoeuvring visibility (inset: Kjell Anderton, director, TrackCompare.co.uk)

Last year the Freight Transport Association urged haulage companies to equip their vehicles with multi-camera systems.  The call followed a 50% rise in crash-for-cash incidents within less than 12 months.

What has been the effect?  Are more HGV fleet operators investing in cameras and, if so, just how much are they spending and what are the benefits?

To discover more, Freight Industry Times - in association with comparison website TrackCompare.co.uk - surveyed more than 300 companies.

The survey, carried out earlier this month, found more than 20% of HGV fleets are now equipped with multi-cameras, with almost 85% of systems bought within the last 12 months.

Kjell Anderton, a TrackCompare.co.uk director, said: "As the vast majority of the various systems were bought within the last year, it seems the FTA's call for increased multi-camera use is being heeded.

"At the very least it shows cameras are now at the front of people's minds - something backed up by the fact more than 29% of companies currently without multi-cameras are considering investing in them.

"The most usual reason respondents give for acquiring cameras is to defend against unfair insurance claims, closely followed by improving driving standards in order to use less fuel and improve safety.  Not a big surprise, really."

Almost a third of respondents, 31%, said multi-camera systems were too expensive to consider.

Full results

1. Have you equipped your vehicles with multi-camera systems?

  1. Yes - 65 (21.31%);
  2. No - 240 (78.69%).

Questions 2 to 6 - put to respondents who answered "yes" to question one

2. When did you install your camera systems?

  1. 0-12 months ago - 55 (84.62%);
  2. 13-24 months ago - 6 (9.23%);
  3. more than 14 months ago - 4 (6.15%).

3. How much have you invested (per vehicle)?

  1. £200-£400 - 35 (53.85%);
  2. £401-£1,000 - 20 (30.77%);
  3. £1001-£1500 - 10 (15.38%).

4. Why did you make the investment?

  1. To monitor driver behaviour and encourage safer, more economical driving - 24 (36.92%);
  2. To be able to show what happens during any accident/incident and defend against unfair insurance claims - 26 (40.00%);
  3. To help drivers manoeuvre more easily and safely - 15 (23.08%).

5. Since installing your multi-camera systems, which main benefit have you experienced?

  1. Helped improve drivers' driving skills - 50 (76.93%);
  2. Reduced the number of accidents and incidents - 10 (15.38%);
  3. Driver and company protected against at least one unfair claim - 5 (7.69%).

Questions 6 and 7 - put to respondents who answered "no" to question one

6. If you haven't installed cameras, do you plan to do so over the next six months?

  1. Yes - 70 (29.17%);
  2. No - 170 (70.83%).

7. If you don't plan to install cameras, why not?

  1. No real benefit - 70 (29.17%);
  2. Never considered it before - 45 (18.75%);
  3. They are on my list for the future - 65 (27.08%);
  4. Too expensive - 60 (25.00%).

Kjell Anderton added: "This was an important survey; the results showed clearly that fleets have begun to see the importance and many benefits that stem from installing multi-camera systems."

Note: A total of 305 HGV fleets took part in the UK-wide poll between 3rd and 15th April.