Using Data Analytics to Improve Safety in Transportation

Using Data Analytics to Improve Safety in Transportation

Alex Ring
Wednesday April 25, 2018

One of the top priorities in every workplace is to ensure a safe working environment for employees. However, what qualifies as “safe” varies significantly between industries. Unfortunately, in the world of transportation, a legally safe environment still poses significant risks. For drivers who spend up to 11 hours a day on the road, those risks add up to make delivery and truck driving the 7th most deadly job in America.


Data Analytics provides a wealth of opportunity when it comes to impacting the overall safety of the transportation industry. The most promising in the future will come through driverless vehicles. Other solutions in the space include more efficient routing to reduce total miles driven, more training for drivers, and retention programs for experienced drivers. Many companies today also record rich driving information and analyze the data to identify patterns in what leads to accidents.

Given this multitude of approaches to solving a very important problem, you might wonder where to start. The opportunity we want to highlight in this post is how you can use data that is already being collected to identify promising opportunities. Accidents are one example of exactly that situation. If we especially focus on accidents, which may be a sign of some more serious system issues, we can ultimately both reduce costs and improve safety.

Using Data Analytics to Identify Promising Initiatives:

After an accident people often ask, “what could we have done differently to avoid this?” Every-day accidents are a significant driver of cost in logistics, even when they do not lead to fatalities. When things turn more serious and there is a fatality, both the National Highway Traffic Safety Authority and the logistics company will collect extensive data to identify what exactly went wrong. In either case, there is information captured in a variety of systems from weather reports showing environmental issues and police reports showing driver error which can help provide insights.

Modern data analytics often starts with pulling data from different systems into one platform for analytics to better understand the global impact of operations within your business. For example, looking at accident hot spots on a map is virtually meaningless without comparing the number of accidents to the total number of company vehicles in the region. Similarly, understanding which accidents are most costly involves accurately representing all associated costs. By using existing data to do this analysis, we both have a lower initial investment, and oftentimes a longer historical view of data we can use to identify patterns.

The myriad of data available these days allows for organizations to strategically inform their business and act on the insights that were previously hidden. The investment in data analytics not only allows for a business to develop a competitive advantage, but the established ROI from their decisions will drive them forward into the future of their industry.

As a key stakeholder in your organization, start taking the right steps forward by breaking down the data silos and unifying your information to make better decisions for the business. At Mashey we can become an ally and help you execute on everything from data management and modeling to advanced analytics and machine learning algorithms. It is our goal to help you gain valuable insights that drive your business forward. Contact Mashey to learn more.

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Mashey is a next generation data and analytics consultancy that designs and implements modern strategies that help transform companies into data-driven and data-informed teams. Through business intelligence, data warehousing, and data science, Mashey provides companies with the advantages of veteran experience and startup agility.