Road accidents are always a huge concern not just in India but also across the globe. And in a bid to reduce road accidents, DENSO recently rolled out a retrofittable driver status monitor (DSM) aimed at creating a safer automotive society. The driver status monitor checks the driver's condition and is equipped with an in-built camera that monitors the driver behaviour and leverages the information obtained from the camera to identify situations, where a driver is bogged down by distractions, drowsiness or any inappropriate posture.
The DSM judges the driver's distraction from face direction, drowsiness from how the driver blinks and inappropriate posture from the position of the driver’s face, said Mitsutoshi Nagata, a driver status monitor (DSM) developer and Manager, Cockpit Engineering Division, DENSO.
The driver status monitor promptly swings into action whenever it finds a driver in such situations and voices an alert from the speaker which is in the ECU. The DSM sends voice alerts like “bleep, Are you OK? Let's take a brake” whenever a driver is grappling with drowsiness. The condition of the driver detected by the DSM is recorded on a Secure Digital (SD) card.
What’s more, this driver status monitor device enables an operation manager to obtain real time information by linking with cloud-based digital tachograph or telematics device. The fleet manager can review driving status, including the number of alerts and images of the driver when the alert was triggered, Nagata explained.
He said DSM can work wonders for more accident-prone commercial vehicles that generally do not install the latest safety devices.
DENSO firmly believes that alerting messages with sound is extremely helpful since commercial vehicle drivers often drive early morning or late night. However, such sound-oriented alerts cannot be leveraged by bus drivers, for which DENSO has other alternatives. DENSO can offer alerts quietly such as vibrations (sound-free).
As far as customers’ response to the DSM usage is concerned, Nagata revealed that customers are keen to check the driver’s moving images in real time.
On the road ahead, the company is looking to shore up its capabilities around the driver status monitor – it will continue to focus on developing news functions such as detecting driver's eyes and expression. DENSO is confident that these new inputs will help assume a driver’s emotion and assist drivers to not only drive safety but also comfortably.