Distracted Driving Equals Disaster

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Removing hazards caused from in-vehicle computing

BY SCOTT BALL, Motion Computing

No utility company would send a worker out in a truck with a known safety defect. North American electric utilities may not realize, however, that by failing to ensure that computing devices are used safely within their vehicles, management could be putting their employees and the public at risk. Even worse, if an accident was to occur, the utility could be held liable. Access to mobile computing is now the rule rather than the exception. The latest generation of mobile-friendly applications has made computing devices essential for connecting workers with peers, receiving and fulfilling work orders, reporting problems, and managing inventory. As electric utilities adjust their workflows to take advantage of the power of mobile computing systems, a dangerous side effect exists—a growing likelihood that workers will use their device while driving the utility vehicle.

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