Volvo Trucks has introduced a new safety function, ‘Distance Alert’, which makes it easier for truck drivers to keep a safer distance from the vehicle ahead and avoid critical situations. Accidents where one vehicle runs into the back of another currently make up around 20 percent of all serious collisions involving trucks.
Carl Johan Almqvist, Traffic and Product Safety Director at Volvo Trucks said, “Often accidents of this kind are caused by inattention and very short distance to the vehicle in front. Distance Alert warns drivers with a red light in the windscreen as soon as the truck gets too close to the vehicle ahead and in most cases, a collision can be prevented.”
Distance Alert is part of the most recent version of Volvo Trucks' driving support system, ‘Collision Warning with Emergency Brake’, which is designed to help drivers to prevent accidents in several stages. If Distance Alert does not have the intended effect, a flashing light and an audible alarm are used to warn the driver. Finally, the advanced emergency brake is activated. All of this happens within just a few seconds.
The new function is intended for use on major roads outside cities and is switched on at speeds over 60 kph, unless the adaptive cruise control system is in use. In the same way as the collision warning system's other functions, Distance Alert uses a combination of camera and radar technology to calculate the distance and identify objects on the road.
Carl adds, “By continuously improving the active safety systems in our trucks, we are giving drivers better ways of reducing the risks that they and other road users are exposed to. Distance Alert is one of many examples of how technology can help to make good drivers even better.”
He further states, “For haulage companies, investing in safety makes sense not only to protect people but also to save money. Lower insurance and repair costs and less unplanned downtime are some of the arguments. In addition, a safe driving style is generally fuel-efficient. The combination of well-trained, safety-conscious drivers and safer trucks benefit everyone.”