Yes, worker safety is a cost. On the other hand, a growing number of companies find the returns outweighing these costs by a significant factor. Collision avoidance and Digital Driver Coach are safety solutions and as such come with a cost. It also allows to quite clearly demonstrate the return on investment, direct and indirect, of this modern safety system-combo. 

Collision Avoidance & Digital Driver Coach

Man-machine, or more specifically, man-vehicle proximity, represent one of the main categories of workplace related accidents. Statistically, one in every ten forklifts will be involved in an accident … every year! 

As much as one in five forklift accidents involve a worker on foot. More than one in three of forklift-related deaths are pedestrians. Within the general number of fatal forklift accidents these fatalities from collision with pedestrians rank as follows: crushed between vehicle and a surface (25%), crushed between two vehicles (11%), struck or run over (10%).

A growing number of companies where man-machine proximity is a constant, have turned to Collision Avoidance and Digital Driver Coach solutions. Not all share the same quality, efficiency or features, but when looking for a top tier system you should consider these  offer: 

  • Extreme ease of use.
  • Real time alerts for both driver as on foot worker.
  • Indoor and outdoor functionality with no need for cellular or Wi-Fi connectivity.
  • 360° highly accurate proximity detection with multiple ranging options to define safe, warning and danger zones. 
  • Configurable alerts to fit in with your operation protocols. 
  • Multiple wear factors 
  • Modular rollout and easy (retrofit) installation
  • Objective, unbiased and driver/forklift specific data collection
  • Low TCO
  • Safety insights that allow for precise incident analytics, individual efficient Digital Driver Coach, the identification of high risk-situations/hotspots, tracking all alerts and near misses, … 

The costs

The most common expenditures when adopting a Collision Avoidance and Digital Driver Coach solution will contain: 

  • Hardware (either purchased or rented):
    • Anchor or other type of tracking device, mounted on forklifts or other vehicles
    • Wearables
    • Charging accessories or stations
  • Software platform
  • Installation 
  • Coaching fee/time
  • License fee

Since all Collision Avoidance and Digital Driver Coach solutions differ, so will their costs. And added to the sums invoiced by the safety solution provider you need to take into account several possible indirect expenses. Such as: 

  • Loss of/reduced production during install/rollout.
  • Integration in/synchronization with existing, overall safety system and procedures.
  • Training/coaching.

The returns

Crudely put, the return of an investment in safety comes down to paying amount X to prevent an accident that might have cost you the larger sum of Y. Not so long ago this was very much a theoretical and thus arbitrary discussion. Today, fortunately, tools have been developed that trim down speculation and reveal substantiated figures for that number Y. 

And, just as crudely: once you get that cost of an incident (Y), you can set it against your investment in a Collision Avoidance and/or Digital Driver Coach solution (X). The difference is your return. And it most definitely is a return, taken into account incident costs such as: 

  • Damages and personal damages claims.
  • Worker compensation claims.
  • Executive and company liability claims.
  • Production, logistics, shutdown.
  • Working days lost or loss of worker/team efficiency.
  • Increase in insurance premiums covering the domains above.

These costs are not exclusive to man-machine or pedestrian-forklift collisions, but relevant nonetheless. Additionally, investing in a top tier Collision Avoidance and/or Digital Driver Coach solution does bring some more specific, and just as perfectly auditable benefits or returns. For instance: 

  • improved vehicle efficiency (fuel savings).
  • improved vehicle handling (maintenance savings).
  • improved vehicle utilization (asset savings).
  • real-time insights and analytics for potentially unknown high risk area’s or procedures.
  • Significant near miss reduction.
  • Overall increase of incident prevention efficiency. 

So there is absolutely no doubt that the returns outweigh the costs of a Collision Avoidance and/or Digital Driver Coach solution. Should you desire a closer look at a top tier collision avoidance solution or a deeper exploration of those substantiated figures as provided by the Expected Monetary Value evaluation, feel free to contact us.

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