Commercial vehicle component supplier WABCO is bringing two new safety systems to market that can be ordered for new trucks and trailers as well as retrofitted to existing equipment.
The first is OnSide, a radar-based blind spot detection system for commercial trucks and trailers – a system WABCO said provides a 160-degree field of view and coverage for up to 65% of a standard 53-foot trailer.
It alerts drivers to the potential of a side collision with a vehicle traveling in a truck’s “blind spot,” the company said; an area in the adjacent lane which drivers cannot see in rearview or side view mirrors.
The system uses advanced short range radar to detect a moving vehicle in the blind spot – especially in “low visibility” conditions such as darkness, rain, snow or fog – and then alerts the driver with a visual signal.
WABCO noted that when the truck’s turn signal is engaged, the system provides a more assertive warning in the form of an audible signal or a seat vibration.
Mounted out of sight behind fairings on either side of the vehicle, OnSide’s “plug-and-play” functionality does not require alignment or calibration. It is also designed to provide alerts for only “moving” targets, not objects that are stationery, the company stressed.
When used in conjunction with WABCO’s OnLaneASSIST lane keeping assist system, OnSide can provide active collision avoidance, the company said – with OnLaneASSIT applying a correction torque to the steering wheel to return the vehicle towards the lane centre.
WABCO noted that Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) research shows that among the 97,000 annual large truck crashes involving intentional lane changes, side view assist technologies could prevent or mitigate nearly 39,000 crashes annually, including 2,000 that result in injury and 79 that cause fatalities.
WABCO added that OnSide will be available as a retrofit kit starting in November on new vehicles in the first quarter of 2018.
The company’s second new safety system is an “Intelligent Brake Interlock” or “IBI” system for tanker trailers – an electronic brake interlock package that ensures the vehicle does not move during loading and unloading activity.
The company said the interlock system monitors vehicle speed as well as the position switch, with an “electronic failsafe” built in to provide an additional layer of safety by helping to prevent inadvertent brake activation while the vehicle is in motion.
Available for spec’ing on new trucks as well as a retrofit kit, IBI is being touted for pneumatic-braking trailers hauling gasoline, diesel and crude oil, cryogenic and compressed gases such as hydrogen, oxygen, carbon dioxide, argon and natural gas, food grade materials, as well as heated tanks and chemicals.