Could Truck Platooning Improve Safety and Increase Savings
Two of the biggest challenges facing the trucking industry today would be crashes and fuel use. Both could be solved by technology called Platooning. Platooning is an emerging technology where vehicles can travel closely together, safely at high speeds. Each vehicle is digitally connected this reduces drag and increases fuel efficiency.
Independent fuel efficiency testing by the U.S. Department of Energy and Transportation has shown double digit fuel savings. The aerodynamic improvements allow the front truck to save fuel along with the rear truck. Fuel savings is a huge opportunity when it comes to platooning. In a two-truck scenario, platooning saves 4.5 percent in fuel for the lead truck and 10 percent for the following truck.
Driving is very unpredictable as we all know, and safety is big concern when it comes to platooning. Platooning trucks travel at a closer distance, this might not seem like a safe idea. However, both trucks are connected using a wireless link, allowing the rear truck to automatically initiate braking even before the front truck begins to slow. This is nearly instantaneous reaction and means trucks cans safely follow at smaller distance and save fuel.
There are still some safety concerns about platooning. One scenario is that the lead truck is hauling pillows and the following truck is running a full load of steel, what would happen in an emergency braking situation? The issue here wouldn’t be if the second vehicle can stop without rear ending the first. Liability would be the issue here especially if the two trucks belong to different fleet operators. Who, or What is to blame? The Driver or the Technology.
This technology is very close, and many companies are running serious pilot programs right now. PNG is here to help answer any questions that you may have about your freight and shipments. Please contact us at 717-626-1107 x 3 or firstname.lastname@example.org