Over the past decades, passive safety systems – like pre-tensioned seatbelts, airbags and energy-absorbing crumple zones – have made a major contribution to road safety by limiting the consequences of accidents. Now, active safety measures – like autonomous emergency braking systems or lane departure warning – offer the potential to avoid emergency situations altogether, or actively help the driver to manage them properly without having an accident.
Regarding vision-related accidents with trucks for instance, the TRL/CEESAR analysis shows that active safety measures – using cameras and sensors to increase the driver’s field of vision and to draw attention to the critical area – are some 50% more effective in reducing fatalities than re-designing trucks with low-entry cabs.
Another downside of low-entry cabs is their negative impact on the load capacity of trucks, as they require major changes to the layout of a vehicle. The less transport space a truck has, the more vehicles are needed to transport the same amount of freight, which in turn would lead to an increase in CO2 emissions.