Preventing accidents: Reverse detection telematics

Published on January 29, 2013 in Driver Safety by Geotab

Appx. 30% of all accidents occur when vehicles are moving in reverse. Reverse detection can help mitigate vehicle damage through unexpected accidents.

Fleet operators understand it is important to ensure driver safety, which also includes taking into account the surrounding external environment. To help mitigate vehicle damage through unexpected accidents, one must not overlook driving in reverse events. Backing out of a parking spot, especially when in a hurry, can be a dangerous activity since other vehicles and pedestrians tend to be nearby and in motion. Surprisingly, it has been estimated that approximately 30 percent of all accidents occur when vehicles are moving in reverse.


Based on the high frequency and likelihood of these collisions, many vehicle manufacturers have added in vehicle in reverse beeping as an extra safety measure. The new Toyota Pruis, for instance, offers this audible functionality, which helps keeps the drivers alert, and consequently reduces insurance property damage claims.


It is recommended that drivers do not back up unless it is absolutely necessary. There are a many hazards to consider when reversing out of a parking spot, including the clearance space surrounding the vehicle, moving objects, and blind spots.

With telematics technology, employers can:

  • Set the GPS tracking device to beep whenever the driver is backing up
  • Set notification rules in the software in order to be informed of these events:
  1. Text message alerts
  2. Emailed alerts
  3. Screen pop-up alerts
  • Look at historic data to see whenever and wherever drivers went in reverse

Built-in fleet management technology detects reversing of a vehicle regardless of diagnostic computer data. This is done with the use of the accelerometer and algorithms to detect what direction the vehicle is going in.


To learn more about reducing parking lot accidents and improving driver safety, please visit:

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Geotab's blog posts are intended to provide information and encourage discussion on topics of interest to the telematics community at large. Geotab is not providing technical, professional or legal advice through these blog posts. While every effort has been made to ensure the information in this blog post is timely and accurate, errors and omissions may occur, and the information presented here may become out-of-date with the passage of time.

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