The need for fleet safety managers to have a meticulous approach to driver risk management is greater now than ever before. The auto insurance industry has been particularly impacted by social inflation, where claim costs have risen above general economic inflation.
In 2019, the number of U.S. verdicts resulting in $20 million or more was up more than 300% from the annual average calculated from 2001 to 2010. Commercial auto specifically has seen rewards and settlements regularly surpass $10 million.
And according to insurance industry experts, the inflation of auto claims is not expected to go down anytime soon. This leaves employers scrambling to find ways to reduce costs associated with crashes.
Below, we discuss three driver risk management tips to help fleets spot trends of risky driving behavior – before crashes and costly claims occur.
Tap into ALL Indicators of Driver Risk
Today, every process and procedure can be tracked in order to increase the effectiveness, performance and safety measures of a fleet. And while fleet managers are keen on knowing all the intricacies of a vehicle asset’s lifecycle, there are also other key performance indicators to be considered – the driving behaviors of the vehicle operator.
Driving behaviors can be utilized as predictors of future crashes and costly claims. Leveraging motor vehicle records and court data as key indicators can help to proactively identify and break patterns of poor driver behavior.
Our recent crash prediction study correlates driver violations with insurance claims, calculating the increased probability of a claim occurring within the 12 months following a specific violation.
Take a look at the first violation listed on the chart. Receiving a violation for failing to signal a lane change increases the probability of a claim within the next year by almost 113%.
Companies that don’t have continuous insight into violations are missing vital data indicative of further reckless behavior – behavior that most likely requires remedial driver training or some other form of intervention.
With this level of insight and understanding, fleets can reduce the frequency of crashes and combat the rise of auto claims. They just need a means of obtaining the driver data ASAP – beyond the risky reliance on annual MVR pulls and self-reporting policies.
Increase Your Data Flow
Historically, procuring and deciphering MVRs has been an administrative burden for companies. Ordering hundreds or thousands of MVRs on an annual or quarterly basis makes it harder to hone in on where a fleet’s citations and violations are trending – and by the time the violation data is obtained, it’s most likely too late. Software known as continuous MVR monitoring exists today that allows companies to easily capture and decipher violation data, so fleet safety managers can assign pertinent training when needed to reduce the likelihood of a future crash.
Train, Train, Train
As you can see from the chart above, the clock is ticking once a driver receives a violation. Every mile an at-risk employee is driving without intervention subjects companies to costly claims. With the right visibility, companies can intervene to correct risky behavior and get drivers safely back on the road. They can do this by establishing a targeted intervention strategy, where companies assign drivers to relevant training courses following a minor violation.
And while remedial training is important to get drivers back on the road, adding frequent, monthly driver training as an additional safety policy requirement is a proven method to reduce violations and ultimately, crashes and claims across a company’s fleet.
Elevate Your Approach to Driver Risk Management
Protecting your brand reputation and bottom line requires a proactive, well-thought-out approach to fleet safety management.
To discover the gaps your company may need to fill in order to establish a stronger driver risk management strategy to decrease the likelihood of expensive auto claims, download our checklist below!