With more than 60 years in business, Prime Source Foods — formerly Poultry Products Northeast — is the largest independently owned food distributor in New England and upstate New York. - Photo: SmartDrive

With more than 60 years in business, Prime Source Foods — formerly Poultry Products Northeast — is the largest independently owned food distributor in New England and upstate New York.

Photo: SmartDrive

Prime Source Foods has deployed the SmartDrive video-based safety program across its entire fleet of refrigerated trucks. Cutting short its competitive pilot, Prime Source Foods immediately knew SmartDrive was the best safety solution for its fleet based on ease of use, speed of receiving videos and intuitive coaching dashboard.

In addition to experiencing no at-fault accidents since deployment, Prime Source Foods has:

  • Eliminated mobile phone use while driving.
  • Reduced speeding incidents by 89%.
  • Decreased instances of following too closely by 90%.
  • Reduced incomplete stopping by 80%.
  • Improved SmartDrive Safety Score by 89%.

SmartDrive has done an amazing job helping make our fleet safer; the numbers speak for themselves,” said Ron Nagle, transportation manager, Prime Source Foods. “But what’s more, SmartDrive has helped reduce our maintenance and fuel costs. On the whole, drivers are operating more safely: there are fewer events triggered by hard braking, we’re seeing safer cornering and overall smoother driving.”

With more than 60 years in business, Prime Source Foods — formerly Poultry Products Northeast — is the largest independently owned food distributor in New England and upstate New York, focusing on center-of-plate products. With more than 3,000 customers, the company provides a full line of proteins and provisions, including all-natural and local products.

“When I joined the safety department in 2017 — after 25 years at Prime Source Foods — I told our management team I wanted to cut the number of accidents in half. SmartDrive has done just that and more,” stated Nagle. “It’s also helped us exonerate drivers when they aren’t at fault, helping save costly marks against their CDLs. SmartDrive has more than paid for itself.”

When SmartDrive was deployed, Nagle wanted to ensure the program would be used as a safety tool to help drivers succeed. The company uses information and insights from the SmartDrive program as the basis for each coaching session, viewing these as an opportunity to communicate with drivers to help them improve. No matter how long someone has been driving, Nagle pointed out there is always something to learn.

To maximize visibility to risk, Prime Source Foods has deployed both road- and cab-facing cameras, as well as back-up cameras. With a complete view in and around the cab and trailer, drivers understand management has their back — and context on hand — when a collision occurs.

In one instance, a Prime Food Source driver was accused of backing into a building. However, video from the SmartDrive system showed the building was already damaged, helping exonerate the driver and avoid a large, unnecessary payout.

“Although everyone may not have been on board when we initially deployed SmartDrive, they’ve quickly come around and experienced its benefits. Drivers appreciate that video is there to validate the actual events in a collision,” added Nagle. “Every fleet should have the SmartDrive program; you’ll save money from day one just on fuel alone. When you add in insurance, repairs, equipment and maintenance savings, it’s a no brainer. Your drivers will get home safer and more quickly, be more refreshed and ready to work the next day.”

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