What Features are Critical as You Choose a Camera System For Your Fleet

To get maximum value from the technology, ask how the camera or video solution addresses the following areas:

• Connectivity and ability to easily communicate and transfer video data
• Sufficient Storage to ensure that the events you want to capture are there when you need them
• Platform/Telematics Integration and Video Management

There are many exciting and complex choices out there. To help you with your process, we’ve decoded some of the different fleet camera system features. But, remember that the best camera solution for your fleet doesn’t need to have everything — just the features that meet your specific needs.

AI Camera
Artificial intelligence (AI) is used in some fleet camera solutions to analyze video content for unsafe driving behavior. In cameras where the AI is embedded in the camera or recorder device, it can be used to audibly coach the driver in real-time in instances of tailgating or possible collision, lane departure, distraction (cell phone use), and other unsafe conditions.

Continuous Video Capture
Continuous video capture means that the fleet dashcam is on and recording if the vehicle is in operation. Depending on the camera, there is typically a limit on the number of hours recorded, such as one or two days of on-board storage. A benefit of continuous recording is that the camera is on to record events whenever they occur. Solutions with continuous recording will also typically include a browsing option to help users search for the content they are looking for.

Event-based Recording
All of our cameras can be set up to record any custom Geotab exception (Or AI Camera Event) and upload the event directly to the cloud. This feature provides the flexibility to capture events that are important to you without needing to search through files of video to find them.

If you manage drivers who work at night, you might need a camera that works in the daylight and also when it’s dark. Cameras with infrared (IR) sensors, also called night vision, can record in the dark, providing video or images in black and white.

Live streaming allows the fleet manager to see what the cameras are viewing as it happens, in real-time, from any particular vehicle they choose. Live monitoring can be useful, for example in monitoring an emergency to gain situational awareness.

On-demand Video Retrieval
On-demand video retrieval is ideal when you want video only related to a specific time, place or event that needs further investigation. Video on-demand empowers Fleet Managers to wirelessly retrieve video footage in real-time to help mitigate risk.

Integrated with your Geotab Telematics
Integrating cameras or video with Geotab telematics is a huge time-saver. You can avoid the hassle of jumping in and out of multiple software apps and instead have one central place for your data, tools, insights and videos, so you can view and manage your video in your existing fleet dashboard.

USA Fleet Solutions (USAFS) is your 1-Stop resource for Fleet DashCams. Whether you are just at the beginning stages, or deep int your camera research, we can help. USAFS has watched the dashcam market evolve and has trialed or tested many of the systems currently available. We know what to look for, and the questions to ask. We can help you as you decide on the type, placement, technology (AI or Not), and specific camera models.

But more importantly, we can show you the camera solutions that will smoothly and easily integrate with your Geotab Telematics system. For any questions about cameras, please call or email David Crumbley, Regional Accounts Manager – (775) 525-2381 David@USAFleetSolutions.com

Come hang out with our Customer Service Manager (or as we call her:) “The Geotab Database Guru”, Tina Orrill, who will take you through an in-depth view of how to best utilize your Geotab telematics system to manage your fleet. Every quarter will have an available webinar to go over:

  • The newest Geotab database and process improvements
  • Recent and planned Geotab updates
  • Managing your dashboard
  • Setting up reports and alerts & using Geo-Zones
  • Creating new users and customizing your company settings to get what you need quickly and easily

Sign up here for the Tips from Tina Webinar on August 3rd at 9:00 am!

    About Tina Orrill:  Tina has always enjoyed interacting with people and uses her organizational skills to help show them that. From organizing work events and birthday lunches, being dubbed the “Holiday Queen” by those who know her, to spending as much time as possible with her adored nephew. There really is nothing like going to the Discovery Museum with a 5-year-old. Even vacations are planned to a tee, like her recent trip to Maui. Making the most out of every interaction and experience is an ongoing goal.

    Since starting at USA Fleet Solutions in 2013, Tina has remained committed to providing the utmost customer service. As a direct customer service agent, Tina became versed in the Geotab platform and numerous add-ins and integrations, as well as a fleet management expert, helping implement many best practices still used today. Now as Project & Customer Service manager, she has trained her team of customer service professionals as well as overseeing all scheduling, trainings, and implementations. Her commitment to training and understanding the customer is always her top priority.


    That’s quite a mouthful, right?  But wait a minute…  aren’t trying to improve driver safety and build engagement mutually exclusive?  Some Fleet Managers we spoke to said things like: “My Drivers are tired of hearing how we want them to drive”,  “Every time I call a Safety Meeting and start to talk about our data with my drivers, they start to get a glazed look on their faces”, and “Why can’t I get our safety numbers to change, my drivers keep doing the same things!”

    In this article, we will share some tips from successful fleet managers who have “Moved the Safety Needle” in their fleets by using their Geotab Telematics data to engage their drivers, while improving fleet safety!

    Let’s Be Positive

    A Focused, Alert, Responsible & Engaged Driver – This is always the goal, right?  This kind of driver will almost always be the safest driver in your fleet.  But how can you get them personally excited about your fleet data?  In fleet safety meetings, it is easy for managers to focus on the areas that need improvement, but often the attention ends up focused on the drivers who need improvement, which can hurt morale and engagement.  So, the trick is how to use the data!

    Using the Data in your Safety Meeting:  Study your Geotab safety data in advance and plan your meeting: (Focusing on the positives)

    • Start the meeting by praising your drivers for an accomplishment from the last month or quarter such as: “Way to go team, we have wanted to focus on keeping our speeding under 10 miles over any speed limit last month, and WOW, you guys knocked it out of the park! In May we had 400 incidents in the fleet, and because of your dedication to a safe fleet and working on speeding, we cut that number in half!
    • Find data that shows which areas your drivers are doing a great job in and start your meeting with a positive talk (showing the data), highlighting how your fleet has improved/or showing a positive trend in that area (2 or 3 positive points if possible!)
    • Show the numbers visually to show the improving trend. (Most of your Geotab Dashboard Safety reports come with visual graphs that you can use for this purpose).
    • Next, show a challenge area: “We really want to focus on (THIS AREA) in July. Let’s see if we can improve our…” (safety scorecard or speeding, harsh braking or seat belt usage, wherever the improvement is needed.)
    • You can also gamify the results by making it fun: “OK Team, if we can accomplish this (Insert data-driven safety goal), we will throw a family BBQ at the end of August to celebrate!”

    “I don’t want to beat up my drivers who are messing up… Driver retention is hard enough!  How can I get them to focus on and improve in the areas of Fleet Safety?”  Upon hearing this question, we asked the VP of Safety for the GTI Group of Companies, Jeff McKinney to share his thoughts on the topic:

    “To me Data, Safety and Driver Engagement work hand-in-hand.  We use the data to praise our drivers, to show where we are, how we are improving and how we have reduced the number of accidents and improved our overall safety scores.  We start out talking about all the successes, and we do that in a group setting.  It is important that we talk TO & WITH our drivers, not “AT” them.  We respect and appreciate our drivers, (and they know it), and that really helps when it comes to getting their attention when we need to focus on improving in an area…  We have been successful because the drivers are engaged in the process, and the data, (and more importantly), the outcome.  They want to see the numbers get better too.  When we added cameras, some drivers were very receptive, while others were very resistant, but we used the data from the cameras to support and acknowledge the drivers in our group meetings.  “Now, I can see that the car pulled out in front of you…  You did a great job!”  But we also use the data to help drivers improve, and any driver that needs coaching gets it, but coaching is always done one-on-one.  We don’t criticize; we coach.  We praise our drivers for a good job, but we cannot be satisfied with that.  We have to push for perfection!”

    Fuel prices are at their highest in the last seven years – So what does that mean and how can you reduce your fleet’s fuel expenses? Every Fleet Manager knows that Fuel is one of the main contributors to a fleet’s operating costs. Using the power of your Geotab telematics, there are several different strategies you can use to improve fuel economy and directly impact your fleet’s bottom line. Here are the top twelve ways you can reduce your fleet fuel costs:

    1. Idling is NUMBER 1 – Stop unnecessarily idling your vehicle.

    Use your Geotab Idle Time Reports and challenge your drivers to improve your overall fleet idle time, or to work to reduce their individual idle time percentage compared to last month!!  Email your dedicated USA Fleet Solutions Customer Services Professional and they can help you set up these reports or show you how you can use them to evaluate your fleet’s performance in this area.

    1. Driver Behavior is NUMBER 2 – Curb aggressive driving

    Use the Geotab Safety Scorecard Report to work with your drivers to reduce excessive speeding, rapid acceleration, harsh braking, and tailgating. These aggressive driving practices dramatically impact fuel economy (by an average of 31%). To curb this behavior, use the Geotab driver scorecard to effectively evaluate drivers based on how they drive and then coach your drivers to promote safer on-road behaviors.

    1. Track and manage fuel trends in MyGeotab

    By using Geotab, you have access to fuel reports that can improve your MPG and reduce overall fuel spending. The Geotab Fuel Tracking and Fuel Economy reports help you track fuel economy, fuel cost, and monthly fuel spending.

    1. Optimize your routes and choose smoother roads

    Choosing the quickest route and smoother roads can significantly increase the efficiency and productivity of the fleet while reducing costs. Taking smoother roads could lead to a 4.5% decrease in fuel consumption, and less wear and tear on vehicles. While controlling the road conditions are out of a fleets control, you can still help your drivers avoid bad roads through planning.

    1. Keep an eye on the tire pressure

    Reduce fuel costs by monitoring your tire pressure, especially when the weather fluctuates. The U.S. Department of Energy found that under-inflated tires can lower gas mileage by about 0.2% for every 1 pound per square inch (PSI) drop in the average pressure of all tires. So, this means that if you have four under inflated tires (only 5 lbs.), your fuel costs just went up by 1% while that vehicle was moving. Make sure that your drivers check their tire pressure before starting their journey.

    1. Conduct regular maintenance checks

    Regularly maintain your vehicle by replacing air filters, changing oil, or just fixing any kind of maintenance issues. These checks can improve your fuel mileage by up to 40%. According to a report in Fuel Economy, just using the manufacturer’s recommended grade of motor oil can improve the vehicle’s gas mileage by 1%–2%.

    1. Match the right vehicle to the task

    When you’re choosing vehicles for tasks, make sure to pick the right size truck for the journey. Using a large truck for a small load and short distance means you are increasing your fuel costs. A good practice is to downsize to vehicles with smaller engines that consume less fuel. Another option is to choose electric vehicles for lighter loads.

    1. Check that the oxygen sensor is working properly

    Oxygen sensors primarily monitor the efficiency of combustion by keeping track of the amount of oxygen remaining in the exhaust. However, they do tend to degrade over time which adds to gas mileage. By repairing a faulty oxygen sensor, you can improve milage up to 40%.

    1. Use fuel cards

    Improving fleet efficiency can also be established through a driver fuel card. A driver fuel card not only makes fuel payment more convenient for drivers, but also helps fleet managers keep track of fuel purchases and other employee transactions. USA Fleet Solutions and Geotab can integrate fuel and fuel card information directly into your Geotab Telematics portal.

    1. Start investigating EVs

    Start considering electric vehicles (EV’s) for your fleet and consider where they might fit. Electric costs are generally less expensive than fossil fuels and more stable, allowing for better budgeting. They are more environmentally friendly and are a key part in creating more sustainable fleets.

    1. Set speed restrictions

    As per a report by the U.S. Department of Energy, it is safe to say that each 5 mph you drive over 50 mph is like paying an additional $0.25 per gallon for gas. By reducing and restricting your speed, you use less fuel which results in lower fuel costs.

    1. Lighten your vehicle load

    The lighter a vehicle, the more fuel-efficient it is. Car manufacturers now build vehicles with composite body parts, which significantly decrease the weight of the vehicle. This means that drivers are carrying only what they need as part of their cargo. The EPA reports that every extra 100 pounds of weight on a vehicle can lower fuel economy by 1%.

    In their Short-Term Energy Outlook, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) predicted that the U.S. average gasoline price will continue to rise due to crude oil price increases. The volatility of gas prices makes it difficult to confirm how high prices could possibly go. Fleet managers can respond to this uncertainty by using their Geotab telematics data and tools to promote more fuel-efficient practices and save fuel costs.

    In a recent amendment, The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) ruled that windshield-mounted video cameras will remain compliant with their guidelines for mounting placement, making permanent a temporary exemption the agency granted previously.

    Published in March and effective May 6, 2022, the rule change amends the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations to allow specific vehicle safety technology devices to be mounted slightly lower on the interior of a commercial motor vehicle than permitted in the past. Previously, the rule required devices to be mounted no more than 4 inches below the upper edge of the area swept by the windshield wipers. After granting temporary exemptions to various companies over the last few years, the FMCSA modified the rule to increase the distance to 8.5 inches. In response to a petition from Daimler Truck North America, a final ruling was given.

    Additional requirements maintain that the units must be mounted no more than 7 inches above the lower edge of the area swept by the wipers. Devices are also still required to remain outside the driver’s sight lines to the road, signs, and signals. Furthermore, antennas, transponders, or other devices mounted at the top of a windshield are required to be located outside the area swept by the windshield wipers.

    Fred Andersky, Bendix director of government and industry affairs, stated that “the rule will make it easier to implement advanced technologies that use multiple sensors without fleets having to worry about violating windshield clearance rules.”

    The ruling marks an important step in the commercial vehicle industry’s highway safety efforts.

    Definition for Safety Technology Expanded

    “Vehicle safety technology” takes on a new definition within the amendment as it adds technologies that had previously been granted temporary exemptions.

    Making one change to the Notice of Proposed Rule-making, the final rule removed ‘‘automatic emergency braking,’’ from the definition for vehicle safety technology. The agency explained that the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act requires the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to complete a rule-making on AEB and FMCSA to complete a companion rule-making. The agency decided that it would be premature to address AEB in the final rule as the technology may or may not ultimately require placement within the swept area of the windshield wipers.

    Vehicle safety technology included a fleet-related incident management system, performance or behavior management system, speed management system, lane departure warning system, forward collision warning or mitigation system, active cruise control system, and transponders under previous definitions.

    With the amendment, this definition will also include braking warning systems, braking assist systems, driver camera systems, attention assist warning, GPS, and traffic sign recognition. Vehicle safety technology includes systems and devices that contain cameras, lidar, radar, sensors, and/or video.

    The FMCSA noted in its decision that it “believes that the rule has the potential to improve the safety of CMV operations,” while offering time savings to motor carriers, suppliers, and the agency in not having to file for exemptions.


    In compliance with Governor Sisolak’s recent COVID-19 guideline update, USA Fleet Solutions will continue operating and utilizing precautions recommended by health officials including social distancing, hand washing, and sanitizing. We are utilizing the technology available to achieve the same level of customer service you have always known from our team and can continue to expect and will be sanitizing all vehicles we come in contact with before and after. As always, please contact us at any time through our office line or via email if you have any questions or if we can assist you. For more detailed information, visit www.usafleetsolutions.com.



    USA Fleet Solutions, Norma Havens, and Bob Belknap were featured in a ThisisReno article, “Home means Nevada? No, it means office.” Read the complete article below!


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