The outcome is usually the same when a large commercial truck crashes into a much smaller consumer motor vehicle. Those in the smaller transport will likely suffer severe, life-threatening, and potentially fatal injuries.
Cutting-edge technology has come a long way in the automotive industry. Referred to as collision mitigation systems, statistics reveal the potential prevention of as many as two in five crashes.
Starting in 2017, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) mandated electronic stability control (ESC) technology installed in new truck models. The system’s objective is to reduce untripped rollovers and loss of control collisions with braking controlled by a computer.
Technology to avoid collisions incorporates multiple risks that can help reduce, if not avoid, collisions. Specific technology includes sensors, lasers, radar, cameras, and GPS. Additionally, artificial intelligence (AI) uses data to gauge the reaction of drivers making real-time decisions about risks and “next steps.”
The radar is housed in the front bumper. Cameras are built into the windshield, replacing older technology that would cause reactions to false events, further frustrating drivers who may already be slow to adapt due to what they see as an overreliance on technology.
Adaptive cruise control in the vehicle helps the truck to maintain an appropriate distance. The car in front slowing will apply brakes to slow down and reestablish proper following length.
Despite the effectiveness, many trucking organizations are slow to implement these essential safety measures, including the all-important automatic emergency braking (AEB) systems. Additionally, drivers are concerned, if not fearful, of the potential for spying on them or taking control of the truck’s operation.