I’ve blogged a fair amount about safety in the trucking industry and recently spent some time poking around the net to see what others are saying about the topic. While doing so, I came across the following post on the SafetyAtWorkBlog:
The post focuses on a piece put together by NPR‘s Talk of the Nation which addresses, among other things, the developing use of VORAD which looks like very promising technology in the area of truck accident avoidance. The collision warning system is described as:
The most advanced accident avoidance system ever developed.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 93 percent of all accidents involve driver error, with the majority of those accidents related to driver inattention. NHTSA research also shows that one extra second of warning could prevent up to 90 percent of rear-end collisions.
Simply put, the Bendix™ VORAD® Collision Warning System helps drivers take evasive action before accidents happen. It’s like having a safety director riding with you every day.
No matter what the conditions, Bendix™ VORAD® (Vehicle On-board RADar):
- Keeps driver aware of safe following intervals and warns of potential hazards ahead, such as a stopped or slow-moving vehicle
- Conditions drivers to avoid hazards
- Helps driver "see" through fog, snow, dust and rain
- Acts as an "extra set of eyes" for driver’s blind spot
- Works continually, even when a driver is tired or distracted
If you have moment, take a look at the demonstration videos. I did, and if the technology works as advertised, it certainly seems worth the investment.
Although likely worth the investment, the technology will not help in certain critical areas, such as truck driver fatigue. I suppose one could argue that the audible warning signals that are sounded when danger presents to the VARDON system could bring a truck driver that is nodding off back to alert status, but reevaluating the hours of service rule is much more critical in addressing this issue. To learn more about this issue, look at this recent post.
Bret Hanna of Wrona DuBois in Utah, focuses exclusively on litigating plaintiffs’ medical malpractice and catastrophic personal injury cases. He has represented clients in state and federal courts, in mediations, and in administrative proceedings in Michigan and Utah since 1991.