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Technology to track driver fatigue might soon be in NZ

Technology to track driver fatigue might soon be in NZ

DSS is based on patented eye-tracking technology that can detect if a driver is distracted or falling asleep at the wheel.

Fleetsafe NZ is working with technology company Seeing Machines to bring its driver safety system (DSS) to New Zealand’s roads to help reduce fatigue crash statistics.

DSS is based on patented eye-tracking technology that can detect if a driver is distracted or falling asleep at the wheel. Using sensor equipment mounted on a vehicle’s dash to observe the driver’s face, the system tracks head alignment for potential driver distraction while simultaneously tracking and analysing eye behaviour to detect micro sleeps. The system provides warnings in the form of in-cab alarms and alerts to an organisation’s central dispatch.

“Driver fatigue is a serious issue in New Zealand. Ministry of Transport statistics indicate that in 2012 fatigue was identified as a contributing factor in 36 fatal crashes resulting in 46 deaths, 106 serious injury crashes and 410 minor injury crashes.

“That’s 46 people who didn’t come home from work in 2012 because they fell asleep at the wheel and frankly it’s not good enough,” said Dim Ramsteijn, CEO of Fleetsafe NZ.

Seeing Machines is now working with Fleetsafe NZ to identify opportunities to implement the technology in the New Zealand transport industry.

“What we offer is a robust piece of technology that, in conjunction with a fatigue management programme and other supportive driver health and safety policies, can help to deliver a sustainable reduction in driver fatigue and distraction events of 80 per cent.

“Following our success in the mining industry, we have modified the technology and are now focused on the transport sector.

“We see Fleetsafe as a potential partner in Zealand, not only because we share the same values around driver safety, but because Fleetsafe has established relationships with a number of organisations that we think would benefit from the technology,” said Steve Hosking, GM at Seeing Machines.

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