[BlogPost 4256117979 Sharing the Road With Large Trucks, BlogPost 4244442214 Earning a Masters degree in Transportation, BlogPost 4245491357 The Future of Collision Avoidance Systems [Video], BlogPost 4404025085 It’s All In What You Eat!]
  • Being a truck driver is not an easy job. It takes a lot of skill to navigate an 80,000 lbs rig through different climates, weather conditions, road conditions and terrains. Also, trucks have large blinds spots making it difficult to tell where other vehicles are at times. Then throw in a bunch of tiny cars zipping around and weaving in and out of lanes in an, at times, unpredictable manner and you’ve got a recipe for a disaster.

  • One of my favorite television programs is one called ‘This Old House”. It is one of the original home repair programs and has been on TV for over 37 years. At the beginning of each program, they list the sponsors of the show and one of them is the IBEW, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. What sticks with me about that sponsor is the part where they say how much training each person has to go through to be a “certified” electrician.

  • Current collision avoidance systems (CAS) do a lot to help reduce accidents. The technology can detect vehicles that are further down the road in your lane and determine if they are slow moving or stationary and provide warnings to the driver. Many systems are also capable of applying breaks in emergency situations. This feature allows for a quicker overall reaction time that makes all the difference in preventing a collision.

    Another nice feature some systems offer is adaptive cruise control. With adaptive cruise control, the system will monitor your speed and distance to the vehicle in front of you and slow down to compensate as needed.

    What these systems don’t do is actually steer the truck around hazards. Automatically applying the breaks isn’t always enough to completely avoid an accident. Being able to steer around the obstruction is often critical. But while the system allows for a faster reaction in applying the breaks, drivers don’t always have time to adjust their course. Hitting the brakes certainly reduces the severity of the collision, but the collision still happens.

    However, it may not be too much longer before your CAS gets a game changing update. Recently, ZF Friedrichshafen AG and Wabco Holdings demonstrated a prototype collision avoidance technology they’re calling “Evasive Maneuver Assist” (EMA). EMA connects the existing braking and stability control systems with an innovative steering solution that can actually steer the truck safely around obstructions. This technology completes the picture of collision avoidance and could make a huge leap forward in safety on the highways. Take a look at this video of EMA in action:

  • It is important to balance exercise with a healthy diet. Exercise is important, but it cannot be your only means of losing weight. To illustrate, going for a 3 mile run might burn somewhere in the range of 400-600 extra calories. Those 400+ calories are completely erased if you swing by McDonald’s for a McDouble sandwich and a small fry. An hour of exercise is easily offset by 5 minutes of irresponsible eating!