Source: Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems announcement
AVON, Ohio – Daylight hours are getting shorter and temperatures are dropping across the United States and Canada, signaling the season where commercial vehicle drivers are increasingly likely to encounter slushy, snowy, and icy road conditions. As the North American leader in the development and manufacture of active safety and braking solutions for commercial vehicles, Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems LLC is sharing insights on what the people behind the wheel may experience from today’s collision mitigation technology on slick surfaces, and tips on staying safer on the roads this winter.
“During our ride-and-drive safety technology demonstrations, two questions frequently pop up,” said Fred Andersky, Bendix director – Demos, Sales & Service Training. “The first is, ‘What can I expect from collision mitigation on a slick road?’ and the second is, ‘Could an automatic brake application cause me to lose control?’ Conveniently, the answers are found in the inclusion of full-stability technology as a building block of collision mitigation.”
Understanding Collision Mitigation Technologies
Systems like Bendix® Wingman® Advanced™ and Wingman Fusion™ are built upon full-stability control, which has been required on most new Class 7 and 8 air-braked tractors in the U.S. since 2017. Full-stability technologies like Bendix® ESP (Electronic Stability Program) – generally known in the industry as ESC (electronic stability control) – are designed to help drivers mitigate rollovers. But importantly, they’re also engineered to potentially help a driver in some loss-of-control, or some loss-of-vehicle-traction, conditions that can be experienced during wintry weather.
“Just like any safety technology, full stability is there to assist the driver – the driver is always in control of the vehicle at all times,” Andersky emphasized. “And it is important to remember that the system has limits: You can drive too fast and negate its benefit. But by building the collision mitigation technology on top of stability control – which is itself built on the antilock braking system (ABS) – we’re helping both drivers and the collision mitigation system keep control when brakes are applied.”
Collision mitigation systems may help drivers mitigate forward crash situations by reducing the throttle and/or applying the brakes when the system detects a potentially threatening forward collision. The difference is that instead of a driver physically stepping on and off pedals to engage and disengage the brakes and throttle, a collision mitigation system may deliver the interventions using electronics in the braking system.
Using input gathered by radar, camera, and system sensors, a collision mitigation system’s electronic control unit (ECU) continuously assesses the vehicle’s situation. If the system determines a forward collision is imminent, then it sends signals to the brake controller, which may reduce the throttle and/or apply the brakes. Prior to cutting the throttle and braking, collision mitigation technology may deliver in-cab alerts as the gap between the truck and a forward vehicle closes. It may also provide an alert before intervening.
Like a driver, the collision mitigation system may need to brake whether the road is slick or not. And it’s important to keep this point in mind: Safety technologies complement safe driving practices. No commercial vehicle safety technology replaces a skilled, alert driver exercising safe driving techniques and proactive, comprehensive driver training. To view the entire announcement, c