Over the next few months JBS Carriers is going to be testing a product called DriveCam in 100 of our trucks. DriveCam is a device that mounts at the center of the windshield of the tractor and will produce short burst video clips of a forward and cab facing camera. Its triggered by G force movements. Hard brake, quick lane change, or actual collision with another vehicle or object. It can also be triggered manually by the driver. It saves 8 seconds before and 4 seconds after of any event and it downloads via cell phone towers to a DriveCam representative who forwards the clips to JBS. So why are we testing this? Currently in any traffic collision we just have witness statements as to what happened. With DriveCam we will have actual video of what is happening in front and to the sides of you prior to the event.
So for example, instead of just saying an unknown vehicle cut you off or forced you from the lane we would have footage of that vehicle. The camera also works when parked so if your truck is backed into when you are in a truckstop we would get video of that event as well. In a given month it cost JBS about $40,000 for unreported tractor and trailer damage.
Now DriveCam will not make this all go away, but it should allow us to find some of the people who are damaging our equipment and leaving the scene. DriveCam also gives us in cab video of what our driver is doing at the time of the event. We plan on using this when needed to counsel and help the drivers to improve their safety choices. We cannot turn on the camera remotely, the only things that triggers it are the G Force events and if you, the driver have something happen that you would like video of.
We will be showing a 15 minute video on the product at this quarters safety meeting and have informational handouts at the terminals if you would like to know more about the product. If the test with 100 units is successful we plan on adding DriveCam to the entire fleet. Thanks in advance for your support of making JBS Carriers a safer place to work.
Rodrigo Horvath, President JBS Carriers
To learn more about DriveCam click here to view the fact sheet or watch the video below.
Hard to believe but summer is right around the corner. The heat of summer can have a big impact on a driver, truck and load. Here are a few tips to keep yourself and your equipment cool when it’s hot outside:
To help yourself beat the heat keep yourself hydrated with water. Carry water in your truck at all times and drink it! Avoid drinking a lot of sugary and caffeine rich liquids (coffee, tea, soda). Caffeine is a “diuretic” which means it increases the excretion of water from your body, thus making you dehydrated.
Also eat foods that will keep you hydrated. Fresh vegetables and fruits such as lettuce, cucumbers, celery, carrots, tomatoes, grapefruit, and cantaloupe are high in water content. Eating these foods will help keep your body hydrated and your energy level high. Avoid eating a lot of fast food and foods with a high sodium (salt) content. Foods high in sodium or sugar can also draw the necessary water from your cells and lower your energy.
When its hot outside your truck is going to work hard to keep going and you can use more engine fluids than normal. The engines in commercial trucks today run extremely hot anyway with the EGR and DEF systems. Make sure you check your oil and coolant levels EVERY DAY. Help yourself keep moving by maintaining your engine fluids and keep yourself from getting stuck on the side of the road with an overheated truck.
Also, your truck/trailer tires’ worst enemy is heat. Air is what carries the load, so the best way to keep your tires running cool is to maintain your tire pressure. Check your tires and tire pressure on your pre-trip and post trip inspections. Check your tires for abnormal wear or excessive heat build up anytime you stop. A quick check on your tires could help you see immediate or potential tire problems. That way you can get them repaired or replaced before experiencing a blowout going down the highway.
Reefers work hard all year but not as hard as during the summer months. Check your fluid levels in your reefer units every day. Double check your box temperature and return air temperature in the reefer menu several times a day to make sure they are running properly. If you are hauling a load of combos (meat) or a load of produce and the reefer must be run on continuous, push the “manual defrost” every time you stop. These types of loads are high in moisture inside the trailer and that moisture can contribute to the reefer unit freezing up quickly during the summer months; particularly if you are running in high humidity. The reefers are set for automatic defrost but it will always help to manually defrost a couple of times a day.
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