A few years ago, some trucks were fitted out with technology that monitored the driver’s every move. Naturally, many truck drivers in Florida worried about whether or not this technology was truly meant to improve safety or just spy on them. The concern was not without warrant. Accordingto Forbes, the tech fitted on the trucks allowed managers to detect everything from braking and speeding habits to unauthorized stops.
The need for safety technology is not unwarranted either. Every year, truck drivers are behind 4,500 deaths in the United States. Surprisingly, the truck drivers who are most at risk for causing crashes are those who operate medium-size trucks. These truck drivers saw a 38.3% increase in their crash-rate index from 2000 to 2010, while larger trucks saw a reduction of 24.6% during that time.
In fact, generally speaking, truck accidents have declined in not just severity but how often they occur. This is due in part to onboard monitoring software, such as the ones that may give you some concern. Should you be worried about this new tech? That depends on whether or not you have anything to hide, or if you have a good relationship with your manager.
As with any other work relationship or monitoring setup, if there are activities you engage in that your boss may find inappropriate you may be reprimanded. This may be true even if your boss was not specifically looking for this kind of data. Likewise, if the boss is actually looking for negative data with malicious intent, they may indeed use this information against you. This scenario is as true for truck drivers as for corporate workers whose computer use is monitored by back-end surveillance.
Unfortunately, Forbes notes that there is no legal recourse for instances where truck drivers fight the use of surveillance systems. This is because federal courts ruled in several instances that employees only have few rights to privacy while working. The good news is that in the event of an accident that was not your fault, or if you are falsely accused, the tech in your truck may provide the evidence you need to prove your innocence.
This article provides information on truck monitoring technology. It should not be used as legal advice.