Top Ten Truck and Trailer Safety Technologies

Top Ten Truck and Trailer Safety Technologies

1) Truck Electronic Stability Control

  • Applies individual brakes to correct the vehicle path.
  • Mandated for new trucks in Europe and USA / Canada.

2) Truck Autonomous Emergency Braking

  • Brakes the truck and trailer to avoid a frontal collision.
  • Mandated on new trucks in Europe, but no active proposal to mandate in Australia.
  • The first step is adaptive cruise control.

3) Truck Auxiliary Brakes

  • Heavy-duty trucks should have powerful auxiliary brakes to help control downhill speed (the best one Owner//Driver has come across is Scania’s transmission retarder).
  • Mandated in Europe but there is no active proposal to mandate here.

4) Truck Blind Spot Detection

  • Displays images or symbols that identify vehicles in blind spots.
  • Improves visibility, particularly on the left side. The danger is driver distraction.
  • No active proposal to mandate in Australia.

5) Truck Suspension Seats with Integral Belts

  • Now mandated in ADR 5.
  • Driver comfort is greatly improved.
  • A principal reason for low seatbelt wearing rate is non-use of integral seats.
  • The legacy problem with most trucks older than 7 years.

6) Truck Lane Departure Warning System

  • Warns the driver when a lane departure is pending or occurring.
  • Helps the driver to deal with fatigue.
  • Mandated in Europe on most new heavy trucks but no active proposal to mandate here.

7) Trailer Electronic Stability Control (TEBS)

  • Slows the truck when a pending rollover is predicted. Proven benefits.
  • Incorporates electronic brake distribution.
  • Under active consideration here.
  • Settings sometimes need to be fine tuned so a relationship with the supplier is important.

8) Trailer Side-Under Run Barriers

  • Important in city driving environments
  • Effective at keeping bicycles, motorcycles and sideswiping cars away from the wheels.
  • Mandated in Europe but no active proposal to mandate in Australia.

9) Truck and Trailer Tyre Condition Management

  • Pressure management reduces stopping distance and improves fuel economy and tyre life.
  • Temperature/pressure monitoring reduces fire risk due to wheel-end problems.
  • Under active review by the European and USA regulators but no active proposal to mandate in Australia.

10) Tipping-Body Stability Management

  • Australia is allowing longer tipping trucks and trailers.
  • Interlocks that monitor air-bag pressure now exist to stop the lift when it is unsafe.
  • No active proposal to mandate here. Should be a basic OHS requirement.

Dr.Peter Hart delivered a fascinating power-point presentation on safety at the latest Technical and Maintenance Conference in Melbourne.

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