Even Big Rigs are receiving the most advanced safety technologies
Wayne Gerdes - CleanMPG
- Oct. 10, 2012
Distraction and inattention can be fatal for any driver, particularly with unexpected stoppages in traffic occur. Volvo Trucks' collision warning with emergency brake, helps drivers prevent rear-end collisions by refocusing the big rig drivers attention back to the traffic ahead. When a critical situation is detected, a series of collision warnings prompt the driver to react, and if the driver fails to react, the emergency brakes ensure that a fatal collision is prevented.
In the trucking industry, rear-end collisions account for a significant proportion of accidents involving big rigs and other automobiles of all different sizes and configurations. In order to reduce the propensity and severity of this type of accident, Volvo Trucks has developed Collision Warning with Emergency Brake – an advanced emergency braking system which also includes early collision warning similar to those used on the most advanced safety equipped cars on the road today.
The new system combines a radar and camera that work together to identify and monitor vehicles in front. The system is designed to deal with both stationary and moving vehicles and can prevent a collision with a moving target at relative speeds of up to 42 mph. When the system detects a vehicle that the truck will hit at its current speed, the warning system activates a constant red light in the windscreen in order to bring the driver's attention back on the road directly ahead.
However, if the truck fails to detect any reaction from the driver, such as steering or braking, the system upgrades to a flashing red light and a beeping sound. If there is still no reaction, the system applies the brakes gently. When all this fails, the system activates the emergency braking system and does everything possible to bring the truck to a stop before an accident occurs.
Carl Johan Almqvist, Traffic & Product Safety Director, Volvo Trucks:
"We began by asking ‘what really is the problem?'. The answer is inattention. If you watched the traffic ahead of you the whole time, you wouldn't need systems like these."
In Europe, emergency braking systems will be a legal requirement in new trucks by November 2015.
The braking system is now available on the new Volvo FH Series line and was been developed to support the driver so that the majority of these rear-end collisions can be avoided or mitigated.
Just like the radar and camera Smart braking systems being introduced in cars from every manufacturers as of late, this is a first for Trucks that I know of. Would it not be spectacular if all trucks had these types of systems on them?