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8/11/2016 4:00:00 AM Write a Letter to the Editor Write a letter to the Editor

Achieving ‘360° Driver Awareness’

This story appears in the Aug. 8 print edition of Equipment & Maintenance Update, a supplement to Transport Topics.

When it comes to personal safety, the time-tested adage “know your surroundings” is sound advice. Whether it’s walking down a dark street or driving in heavy traffic, the more you know about what’s around you, the more quickly you can react to changing conditions.

Today, the phrase “360-degree driver awareness” is often used to describe technologies and devices that improve safety by increasing drivers’ knowledge of what is around their vehicles — with the ultimate goal of avoiding crashes.

Duke Drinkard

Manufacturers are starting to employ multiple technologies to achieve 360-degree awareness, including mirrors, cameras, sensors and monitors. The technologies not only improve a driver’s ability to see around the vehicle but also provide enhanced warnings and alerts when visual clarity isn’t optimal.

BEST OF AUGUST E&MU: More stories, columns

Fleet managers are being offered many solutions to help driver awareness, but integrating these technologies on the vehicle so they work well together remains a challenge. Minimizing the potential for driver information overload continues to be a concern.

However, American Trucking Associations’ Technology & Maintenance Council has been at the forefront of industry efforts to increase driver situational awareness through improved standards and technology advancement.

For example, TMC’s S.4 Cab & Controls Study Group and Future Truck Committee have encouraged all vision-awareness technology providers to use the standard measurement techniques and objectives defined in their Recommended Practice 428A, “Guidelines for Vision Devices,” as well as in the Society of Automotive Engineers’ J1750, “Describing and Evaluating the Truck Driver’s Viewing Environment.”

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By Duke Drinkard
Chairman, TMC Future Truck Committee

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