Scania promotes cyclist-friendly truck safety
While some trucks have blind spots that pose a danger to pedestrians and cyclists, others have far better visibility, according to a recent study by the Loughborough Design School at Loughborough University in the UK.
The research – on behalf of Transport for London, the local government body responsible for the transport system in Greater London – has been prompted by concerns for the safety of cyclists and pedestrians. While road safety in the UK has improved over the past decade, the number of injured or killed cyclists has increased.
Loughborough University has compared the blind spot size in the 19 best-selling trucks in the UK. It found that low entry cabs generally offer better direct vision when compared to standard cabs. But it also found that the Scania P-series cab shared many of the good visibility characteristics of the low entry cabs.
A cyclist is visible to the driver in immediate proximity to the Scania P-series cab while in some other brand cabs the cyclist is obscured for a distance of 1.5 metres. Pedestrians standing in front of the truck will, in some cases, not be visible unless nearly one metre from the cab, while the distance when they can be detected by the drivers in low entry cabs is nil and in Scania’s P-series cab 20 centimetres.
“With many of the characteristics of a low-entry cab, the Scania P-series cab has great direct vision, which drastically reduces fatal blind spots,” writes the Brussels-based NGO Transport & Environment.
The organisation has drawn this conclusion by combining the obscuration distances in Loughborough study – distance from the truck where cyclist or pedestrian cannot be fully seen – for cyclist to the left, cyclist to the right and pedestrian in front of the truck.
According to the Loughborough Design School study, vehicles with higher driver height above the ground generally have larger direct vision blind spots.
“However, the further analysis of the situation for the passenger-side rear cyclist and the central pedestrian in front of the vehicle illustrate that the specific design of features such as the driver seat location, and the design of the window and windscreen apertures can affect the size of the blind spots,” the study summarises.
In response to the challenge to reduce risk and afford greater protection to pedestrians and cyclists, Scania in the UK has worked with its industry-partners and academic research bodies to develop a new standard for tippers operating within city centres.
Scania is the biggest supplier of 8x4 tippers in the UK.
Equipped with a lightweight body, the research vehicle has been specified for applications where it is anticipated that 90–95% of the vehicle’s driving-time will be on the public highway.
Designated the Scania Urban Tipper, the vehicle encompasses a raft of safety-enhancing features:
Breaking away from the 8x4 norm, the 8x2*6 configuration provides a highly manoeuvrable chassis with three steering axles.
The truck features a 410 hp SCR Euro 6 engine, which has set new fuel-efficiency records in independent trials conducted throughout Europe. It features fully-automated gear-selection through the two-pedal Scania Opticruise transmission to enhance safety in operation by reducing stress and fatigue on the driver. Full air-suspension enables the chassis height to be lowered when driving in urban areas, thereby also lowering the driver’s eye-line for better direct vision. The suspension can be raised to increase ground clearance when working on more demanding terrain.
Developed specifically for the British right-hand drive market, the large glass panel inserted into the lower section of the passenger door provides the driver with a direct line-of-sight to the front nearside of the vehicle.
The Scania Urban Tipper features a range of proven active safety features including Advanced Emergency Braking, Lane Departure Warning, Electronic Stability Program and a Camera Monitor System by leading safety solutions provider, Brigade Electronics plc.
August 05, 2016
| Posted in: News