73-Year-Old Carrier Equips First ADB Equipment with the Bendix ® ADB22X ™
ELYRIA, Ohio – July 11, 2018 – What’s new at Nussbaum Transportation? Not its 73-year tradition of hauling everything from tractor parts to window glass; not its company-wide commitment to safety; not its culture of integrity and character. In its fleet, though, 90 new Freightliner Cascadia® model vehicles mark a milestone for the Hudson, Illinois-based carrier, as Nussbaum’s first air-disc-braked equipment, spec’ed on all axles with the Bendix ® ADB22X™.
“About half of those trucks are on the road right now, and the drivers all really like ADBs compared to the old drum brakes,” said Tony Morthland, Nussbaum Transportation director of maintenance. “They’re smoother, quieter, and the drivers say they feel like they have more control over the trucks, since there’s no fade or brake steer.”
Founded in 1945, Nussbaum’s fleet of 400 tractors and 800 trailers serves the continental United States. The company employs nearly 450 people, including 361 active drivers, and has earned safety and innovation awards from the Truckload Carriers Association and Commercial Carrier Journal.
The ADB22X is produced by Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake LLC (BSFB), a joint venture between Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems LLC and Dana Commercial Vehicle Products, LLC. Since launching the ADB22X in 2005, BSFB has produced well over 2 million units, reflecting an ever-increasing demand for air disc brakes in the commercial vehicle industry. Worldwide, Bendix and its parent company, Knorr-Bremse, are the clear global leader in air disc brake production at nearly 40 million and counting.
Supporting a Culture of Safety
“Safety technologies are a big part of everything we do, and we commit a lot of time and resources to putting our drivers behind the wheels of safer trucks, as well as ongoing driver training and development programs,” Morthland said. “We try to adopt new technologies as soon as they are available, and thoroughly educate the drivers on how they work: Our best drivers all know that they can always become better.”
Nussbaum equips a range of advanced vehicle safety systems to support its drivers, and Morthland noted that it makes sense to utilize air disc brakes and maximize the performance of higher-level technologies like full stability and collision mitigation. Air disc brakes enhance safety by providing shorter stopping distances than drum brakes, virtually eliminating brake fade, and providing greater reliability with a car-like feel and more consistent stops. During mountain descents or heavy stop-and-go traffic situations, the stopping power of drum brakes can be affected by brake fade as the brakes heat up. The improved side-to-side stability of air disc brakes also reduces the risk of brake steer for straighter, more stable stops.
Bendix® air disc brakes exceed FMVSS-121 stopping distance requirements by 20 percent and also exceed the federal Reduced Stopping Distance (RSD) requirements mandated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Nussbaum’s safety focus has earned the company recognition in the Truckload Carriers Association’s Fleet Safety Awards and played a key role in its 2017 Commercial Carrier Journal Innovator of the Year award. Putting drivers in safer trucks is also a part of Nussbaum’s emphasis on respecting its drivers, and emphasizing the values of integrity and character. With driver retention a challenge industry-wide, developing driver support and training programs, along with a dedication to respecting the men and women at the wheel, has been instrumental in keeping its turnover rate low, Morthland said.
Efficiency and Uptime
Air disc brakes are also meshing well with Nussbaum’s efforts to increase vehicle efficiency and uptime. Nussbaum drivers are trained to use light brake applications as much as possible, which Morthland said had led to some issues with drum brakes in the past.
“We were dealing with things like brake chatter and steering wheel wobble, because our drivers weren’t aggressively using the drum brakes,” he explained. “This meant we had hard and soft spots on the shoes – and uneven wear means shorter life, less predictable performance, and more time spent on maintenance.”
Additionally, air disc brakes like the ADB22X™ offer quicker pad replacement – about one-quarter the time of replacing drum brake friction once the wheel is off – and longer pad life. Lower maintenance costs and greater uptime contribute to decreased Total Cost of Ownership (TCO). The ADB22X also includes an internal self-adjustment mechanism that can help lower the risk of brakes being found out of adjustment during inspection, which can affect Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) scoring.
“Partners in safety like the entire Nussbaum team are the reason everyone at Bendix can wake up in the morning knowing that they’ve made a difference on the roads of North America and helped make the highways safer for truck drivers and everyone else,” said Lance Hansen, Bendix North America regional vice president – fleet/trailer sales & service engineering. “Equipping, improving, and supporting their fleet, drivers, and technicians is something we’re incredibly pleased to be a part of, and we’re excited about the road ahead.”
Through an ever-growing portfolio of technologies, along with unparalleled post-sales support, Bendix delivers on safety, vehicle performance, and efficiency, lowering TCO and strengthening return on investment in today’s most effective commercial vehicle safety systems.
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