HAAS Alert, a SaaS company that provides real-time automotive collision prevention for public safety and highway fleets, has raised $ 5 million in seed funding that the company says it will use to scale sales and outreach efforts and prioritize R&D with vehicles to Vehicle Technology Associations and Vehicle to Infrastructure (V2X).
The round was led by R ^ 2 and Blu Ventures and joined by TechNexus, Stacked Capital, Urban Us, Techstars, Ride Ventures, and the Gramercy Fund.
HAAS Alert relies on cellular sensors to ingest road hazard data from the environment around a vehicle and its predictive technology to digitally alert drivers through their vehicle systems. HAAS Alert’s proprietary digital alert system, Safety Cloud, can be found on a variety of fleet vehicles in the public and private sector, from fire trucks, ambulances and police vehicles to cranes, construction and waste vehicles, school buses and more.
“First responders, tow operators, construction crews and work zones and similar municipal fleets have extremely high rates of fatalities and injuries from collisions.” Jeremy Agulnek, Senior Vice President of Connected Vehicles for HAAS Alert, told TechCrunch. “They also form the backbone of our communities, and all drivers meet them on the road on a daily basis. To begin with, many of these jobs are inherently risky, yet unforeseen incidents remain a leading cause of death for all of them. “
HAAS Alert sees Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) and V2X as the solution, so it built its service to start with those most at risk on our roads and grow from there.
“For us, it’s not about using connected vehicles for entertainment and general connectivity, it’s specifically about safety,” he said. Agulnek. “By connecting and protecting these people, we can immediately deliver a connected vehicle experience to all drivers and infrastructure in a way that also makes communities safer. We believe that solving for safety with first responders and road workers is the most critical component in advancing mobility to the next stage. “
So far, Safety Cloud is present in vehicles in more than 750 public agencies and private organizations that have sent more than one billion alerts together.
HAAS Alert represents a growing number of startups looking to take advantage of V2X technology to reduce the risk of collisions, and financing is a huge piece of the puzzle. Not only does it cost money to build and keep software up to date, but the hardware and human energy costs associated with installing sensors, both in public infrastructure and inside vehicles, are not cheap. HAAS Alert expects to reach 10 billion driver safety alerts by 2022, and to do so, it will need to engage the automotive industry. The company currently works primarily with fleets, but says the more fleets on its platform, the more automotive customers it will attract, and vice versa.
“We charge reasonable fees for fleet and agency customers to activate their road assets in the Safety Cloud, and we charge a subscription fee to auto customers to license the safety alerts, software and other services we provide. ” Agulnek said.
The company says it is actively installing its HA-5 transponder hardware in vehicles across the country, allowing equipped vehicles to automatically send digital alerts to approaching drivers when emergency fleets activate their flashers. These alerts alert road users to response personnel on or near the road, giving drivers time to slow down or move.
Agulnek says that hardware setup is quick and easy with minimal downtime, but fleets also have the option of integrating the Safety Cloud without hardware through the vehicle’s existing CAD, GPS or telematics system.
“All that is needed to add Safety Cloud alerts to a vehicle is a software update to receive data through the vehicle’s existing telematics capabilities and display driver alerts on the infotainment display and / or instrument cluster.” Agulnek said. “We are working on a project right now with an automaker where it took less than a week to implement alerts inside their vehicles.”
The calculations are done in the cloud or on the edge of the chips within the hardware, which means that the alert logic can reside in the HAAS Alert cloud, in the vehicle OEM cloud, in the vehicle’s head unit, or in a multi-site hybrid architecture, according to Agulnek.
A fleet management platform, Situational Awareness Dashboard, comes standard with Safety Cloud and is designed to allow coordinating agencies in all jurisdictions to work together. HAAS Alert also includes potential add-ons for specific industries. For example, responder to responder (R2R) features a set of attached lights within a vehicle that sends notifications to responders when other Safety Cloud-equipped vehicles are in active response mode and approaching the same intersection. FleetFusion enables customers to integrate real-time Safety Cloud data into internal dashboards, third-party applications, and traffic management centers.