D.M. Bowman puts SmartDrive to work

“It’s not like they’re sitting there watching you in the cab. … It is a tool to give us clarity as to what happened, when it happened and, most importantly, why it happened.”
Jim Ward,
D.M. Bowman Inc. president and CEO

SmartDrive Systems recently announced that D.M. Bowman Inc. has deployed the SmartDrive program across its fleet of more than 380 trucks.

Bowman is a family owned and operated trucking company based in Williamsport, Md. SmartDrive is a leader in video-based safety and transportation intelligence.

“Video allows us to identify and address risks before a collision occurs, and the SmartDrive program proved to be the best solution to support our culture of safety,” Barry Wertz, director of risk management and safety at D.M. Bowman, said in a news release. “The SmartDrive team provided excellent support, making sure the deployment went smoothly and set us up for success. Additionally, the coaching application proved very easy to use and saves our fleet managers significant time, minimizing the impact of change on our teams.”

In a telephone interview, Jim Ward, Bowman president and CEO, said the system is a more sophisticated version of event recorders the company has used for years. He said it’s part of Bowman’s safety technology, which includes a collision avoidance system and lane-changing warnings.

“It’s not like they’re sitting there watching you in the cab. … It is a tool to give us clarity as to what happened, when it happened and, most importantly, why it happened,” Ward said.

The system also can capture information about the traffic and conditions outside the truck, he said.

It also provides the company with data “to coach our professional drivers on skill sets they will make them a better driver associate,” he said.

In the news release, SmartDrive reported Bowman saw improved safety scores and lower fleet costs during the pilot program. The company also said the system is being used in Bowman’s driver safety program, which rewards drivers for safe performance. The system’s safety score, unique to each driver, offers a consistent, unbiased approach to measuring performance.

“Video-based safety and analytics solutions are increasingly becoming an essential tool for all fleets dedicated to safety,” said Matt Brunelle, vice president of customer success at SmartDrive. “Leveraging the actionable insights served up by the program, D.M. Bowman has made driver coaching part of the daily routine. They are an excellent example of a fleet taking full advantage of the SmartDrive platform, and reaping significant cost savings and safety improvements as a result.”

Bowman, named as one of the top 200 carriers in the nation, operates a dedicated transportation, warehousing and logistics organization. Founded in 1959, it is privately held and has a fleet of 382 power units and eight terminals on the east coast.

SmartDrive Systems, the recipient of Frost & Sullivan’s Customer Value Leadership Award for Video Safety Solutions, gives fleets and drivers driving performance insight and analysis, helping save fuel, expenses and lives. The company is ranked as one of the fastest-growing companies by Deloitte’s Technology Fast 500. It is based in San Diego.