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3 technologies that can benefit from 5G to better protect truck drivers

3 technologies that can benefit from 5G to better protect truck drivers
Drivers of trucks or other types of vehicles are an important asset to a company’s fleet operation. How to protect their lives and well-bring, then, becomes critical in fleet management. In this regard, 5G can help drivers stay safe and efficient on the road.
Trucks play an important role in delivering goods from point A to point B. Yet this process is not always smooth sailing. Consider the following statistics:
  • There were 4,102 deaths in truck wrecks in 2017, showing a 52 percent increase since 2009, according to the US Department of Transportation’s Fatality Analysis Reporting System.
  • Mechanical defects (with tires, most often), new tour routes and fatigue are the most common causes of truck crashes, according to a study by the U.S. Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
  • 24 percent of the drivers said they “often” continued to drive despite fatigue, bad weather or heavy traffic, while 47 percent of drivers said they continued to drive in these conditions “sometimes,” according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which also suggests that 35 percent of drivers reported at least one crash in their career.
For protection against incidents such as above, drivers increasingly turn to IoT devices and the data they generate, all of which can benefit from 5G due to its increased networked speed and reduced latency. “The driver will benefit by way of upstream systems delivering better information for business operators and for decisions. The upstream consumer or system needs to be able to absorb and process this information in real time and provide instant answers. AI technology and modern–purpose designed technical stacks will be required to deliver these answers,” said Andrew Rossington, VP of Next Generation Platform at Teletrac Navman.
Specifically, there are certain technologies that, when working in 5G, can be more effective in protecting drivers. These are discussed as follows.


More and more, trucks are equipped with telematics and sensor that check vehicle conditions and detect irregular driving patterns. “Drivers will proactively use 5G-enabled technologies and sensors to help them stay in lanes, avoid collisions, drive under speed limits, get real-time information about route conditions, get equipment health checkup notifications and contact emergency services in the event of an accident,” said Shaurya Singh, Industry Analyst for Security at Frost & Sullivan


In-vehicle sensors and onboard units can communicate with other vehicles and devices under the vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-everything (V2I) schemes which can get a further boost from 5G. “5G networks will bring in the increased use of V2V & V2X communications leading to drive assist in crowded places, intersection movement assistance, traffic intelligence insights, drive assist during poor visibility, enhanced forward-collision warnings, blind-spot warnings and proximity warnings,” Singh said. “Through faster sensor communications, the drivers will increase their collision avoidance capabilities.”
“The increasing visibility of fleets will help in safety of drivers and ensure the very strong communication between private and public fleets ensuring the real time notifications regarding the road conditions that will help in prompt decision making like rerouting, hence eliminating the delays and traffic jams,” said Noor Ul Mushtaq, Head of product Management at Nundlab.


Video cameras can serve as the eyes of the truck. With 5G, video transmission will be more instantaneous and seamless. “Camera systems are also becoming more prevalent in the cab of the truck, for safety and liability reasons. Usually the cameras store video in the truck as a backup. Unless an event triggers a reason to review, the video usually stays on the truck, unused,” said Rich Haus, TrackIt Product Manager at Command Alkon. “5G could enable more frequent viewing of video content, to assist in the dispatch process, for example. Knowing if the driver is washing out the truck at a jobsite visually would be more likely confirmed with 5G video than today’s relatively manual driver status behavior.”

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