Vehicle safety system provider Vision Techniques have completed trials of an emergency braking system that safely stops the vehicle when a button is pressed; at Craven Council in Skipton.
A recent report on the Glasgow bin lorry tragedy released by Sherriff John Beckett highlighted a need for Advanced Emergency Braking Systems on active waste vehicles.
Over the past year Blackburn based vehicle safety innovators Vision Techniques have been quietly developing a feasible and affordable retrofit option designed to bring any type of vehicle to a skid-free, safe stop if a driver becomes incapacitated and is unable to control the vehicle.
“We call it VT StopSafe, effectively the system reduces the vehicle’s speed while simultaneously bringing it to a controlled stop using the braking system. The system is activated using a secure emergency button installed to the vehicle dashboard, allowing the crew to react to an emergency situation.” Explained Technical Manager Nigel Armstrong, the lead developer of the system.
To build a system that would prevent the Glasgow tragedy from ever happening again needed the combined contribution of both council and manufacturer, leading to a better understanding of what the industry needs. Skipton based Craven Council have worked with Vision Techniques in the past and Workshop manager Steve Parkinson was passionate to help find a way of making the technology viable for the municipal industry.
“Every council in the country was shocked by the events in Glasgow. If a driver loses control of the vehicle it’s reassuring to know that equipment like this can step in to prevent a potential disaster. ”
This AEBS system has been tested at Craven Council in a controlled environment, where their test bin lorry came to a controlled stop at speeds of 45mph when the emergency button was pressed.
The company is the only ancillary systems provider to manufacturer any direct solution to the problem of out-of-control vehicles and plan to offer the system to every council in the country. Vision Techniques have made it clear that this solution has been developed to work universally across any manufacturer’s vehicle and is suitable for both new build and retrofit.
Nigel added “Giving any municipal crew the ability to prevent a catastrophe using an emergency stop button could encourage other councils to try AEBS systems like this in the future.”
StopSafe joins a range of specialist solutions only available from Vision Techniques, including VT BrakeSafe – that automatically applies the vehicle handbrake if a driver forgets to when leaving the vehicle, preventing runaways; and VT TurnAware, their criticially acclaimed, award-winning video analytic cyclist detection system.
For more information: www.vision-techniques.co.uk