At Geotab, many of our employees equip their vehicles with our GPS vehicle tracking technology in order to track fuel usage, total miles driven, location tracking, and to improve safety. One of our employees was driving into work when an unexpected incident occurred.
This employee stopped at a red light, and after checking the intersection proceeded to turn right, as it is legal in Canada to do so. After hearing something unusual, the employee stopped to investigate, only to find a cyclist not wearing a helmet and a state-of-the-art bicycle on the ground.
Even though the cyclist appeared to be completely uninjured, there was no way of knowing at the time whether or not he had any injuries, and if there would be damages claimed. What’s more, this accident could be documented as a moving violation on the employee’s license, causing years of increased vehicle insurance fees. The attending police officer believed that the accident must have occurred due to cruising through a red light, and that in any case, when there is an altercation between a cyclist and a motor vehicle, the driver is usually found at fault.
Upon arriving at work that day, one of Geotab’s engineers extracted the accident data from the GPS unit to show the entire trip to work. The engineer managed to prove that the vehicle had stopped well behind the white line for exactly 17 seconds. Then, by using Google Maps, the location of the accident was shown, making it clear that a bus shelter would have prevented the employee from seeing a cyclist who was on the incorrect side of the road – on a pedestrian path, moving at high speed. As a result, the cyclist was fined for being on the pedestrian walk, travelling against the traffic, and not wearing a helmet.