SINGAPORE: Three types of speed-tracking devices for heavy vehicles are currently on trial until August, the Traffic Police (TP) announced on Tuesday (May 22) at the sixth edition of the Singapore Road Safety Month.
The event, which was focused on educating heavy vehicle drivers and motorcyclists, was kicked off by Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Home Affairs and Health Amrin Amin at Republic Polytechnic.
Speed limiters are currently mandated for certain heavy vehicles to curb speeding, but can be easily tampered with, TP said. The current trial aims to find a technology to complement or replace the speed limiters in heavy vehicles to effectively curb speeding.
The three speed-tracking devices being trialed are the Digital Tachograph, the Enhanced Speed Limiter and the Fleet Management System. The devices are equipped with an audio buzzer, which will be activated when the heavy vehicle driver exceeds the speed limit. The devices are being tested on 30 vehicles.
The Digital Tachograph will be able to automatically track and record the vehicle’s travelling speeds throughout the journey. Information recorded can be used for enforcement efforts for speeding.
The Enhanced Speed Limiter and the Fleet Management System will employ GPS to calculate the travelling speed of the vehicle to prevent tampering of the speed limiter. It can also track the travelling speed of the vehicle throughout the journey.
Speaking to Channel NewsAsia, chairman of the Singapore Road Safety Council Bernard Tay said he hopes better driving behaviour will come out of the initiative: “Hopefully this will reduce accidents and be safer for all road users."
He added the focus this year is on commercial vehicle drivers, because they spend a lot of time on the road. “Heavy vehicles are bulky, there are a lot of blind spots and whenever there are accidents it can be fatal for victims. Motorcyclists can also be more vulnerable as they are not well protected."
The Traffic Police has partnered vehicle tracking firm Cartrack Technologies South East Asia for the trial, with three companies - Goldbell Group, Ley Choon Group and Koh Kock Leong Enterprise - on board.
The Traffic Police will study the accuracy and compatibility of these devices and with the heavy vehicles as well as their ability to resist tampering, after which it will consider implementation on heavy vehicles.
In his speech, Mr Amrin said the launch of the speed-tracking devices installed on heavy vehicles “will enable companies to monitor the speed records of their drivers and take timely remedial action against those who speed".
He noted commercial heavy vehicle drivers spend much of their time on the road and are more likely to be involved in accidents.
“Although the number of accidents involving heavy vehicles decreased by 13 per cent from 2016 to 2017, such accidents are more likely to result in fatalities. In 2017, three in 10 fatal accidents involved a heavy vehicle," he said.
Motorcyclists are also not spared, Mr Amrin said: “While the number of fatal accidents involving motorcyclists decreased by 30 per cent in the same year, accidents involving motorcyclists made up more than half of all traffic accidents. Four in 10 fatal accidents involved a motorcycle.”
At the event, the Traffic Police also unveiled two new educational videos to remind motorists to observe safe driving practices and stay vigilant on the road.