How This Wearable Technology Can Save a Tired Trucker’s Life

Have you heard about Co-Pilot? It's a product made for long-haul truck drivers who realize the risks behind what many refer to as trucker's fatigue. The company behind Co-Pilot, Maven Machines, entered the industry in 2014, and it has been all the rage ever since.

What Is Co-Pilot?
Co-Pilot is a safety and performance device for truck drivers and fleet managers. It consists of two main components: a GPS system and a Bluetooth headset, which has sensors that track your head movements.

Co-Pilot tracks and monitors many things, including:

  • Average time between mirror checks
  • Number of mirror checks by side
  • Number of head nods

These metrics can be calibrated into the headset thanks to Safe & Sound, the company's trademarked technology. The tracked head movement is cross-checked with expected behavior under normal driving conditions for both a driver's location and the time of day.

If you're driving and suddenly fall asleep, the device will sound an audible alarm. This will give you enough notice to react to the bobbing of your head, letting you respond in time and potentially prevent a life-threatening accident. There's also a danger threshold that triggers an alert for other reasons, such as failure to check your mirrors frequently enough.

Co-Pilot is a Big Help for Fleet Managers
If you are a fleet manager, you can use Co-Pilot to boost the performance of your drivers. The information it tracks will tell you whether your drivers are alert enough when at the wheel. Maven Machines has integrated statistics for the average number of mirror checks the driver makes. The programmed stats even factor the time of day and whether you're driving locally or on the highway.

Fleet managers can pair this device with on-board cameras to keep track of every aspect of the driver's vehicle performance. This scenario is perfect because it allows you to look at what happened on the road when the driver suddenly made excessive mirror-checking or head-bobbing movements.

Fixing a Problem That Shouldn't Exist
All it takes is nodding to sleep for a few seconds to find yourself in a ditch or hitting another truck. But truckers work a job that is extensive and draining, so driving while at risk of experiencing fatigue is definitely a standard thing. Whether it's Co-Pilot or another wearable driver safety mechanism, you should not be subject to a life-or-death situation just because you are tired.

You cannot drive for any more than 11 of 14 consecutive hours, and there needs to be at least 10 hours of rest in between shifts. Within eight straight days, you must record no more than 70 hours of driving time.

What Is Maven Machines?
Maven Machines, the creator of Co-Pilot, is an innovative startup with a focus on wearable technology. Co-Pilot is the first product to come to market. The plan is to grow as a mobile hearables platform and to eventually offer other hearable devices.

The company is completely legitimate and backed by over $1.3 million in investment funding. The latest funding came through a venture round in September 2016, for the amount of $775,000, which should stir some new developments.

The Co-Pilot product is just starting to gain traction. It will be interesting to see whether a wide-scale implementation of this device impacts trucking accident statistics.

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