Can ‘Halo®’ or ‘Red Zone®’ help assist drivers who have a ‘deep-seated and genuine’ concern over motorway safety?
The levels of freight being transported on UK motorways is making drivers fear for their safety, a new survey suggests.
Figures published by the Government show that HGV traffic on motorways reached a record 7.9bn vehicle miles in 2021.
The data also shows that the size and weight of lorries is increasing – with mileage covered by HGVs with four or more axles some 44% higher in 2021 than in 2001.
On the back of these figures, a new survey by road safety charity Brake, published May 2022, suggests that 75% of people believe too much freight is being transported on UK motorways.
More than 25% of respondents thought it was ‘highly likely or likely’ that they would be involved in a fatal or serious crash on a motorway or dual carriageway.
In recent years, the Government has introduced all-lane running on UK motorways, while announcing plans to trial lorry platooning – leading Brake to suggest they are prioritising capacity over safety.
77% of respondents believe that lorry platooning ‘sounds frightening’, even after having the technology explained to them, and that ‘if it went wrong the casualties could be very high’. According to Brake, drivers also expressed doubt over all-lane running, with only a third saying using the hard shoulder as a driving lane would improve safety.
Other options include detection devices such as the SideScan Predict.
Sidescan®Predict is the next generation in collision avoidance systems that can intelligently calculate a potential collision and warn the driver to take evasive action.
In 2020 the system went live and received excellent driver feedback with fleet managers noting a significant reduction in the risk of collision with both vulnerable road users and static objects.
How it works
AI constantly gathers object detection data, such as the speed and distance of a cyclist or other vulnerable road users, from the truck. This data feeds an algorithm created by Brigade to calculate the risk of a collision with cyclists and pedestrians who are within a 2.5 metre vicinity of the vehicle.
Additionally, the system remains switched on when the vehicle's speed is below 22mph/30kph, regardless of the indicator selection, and cannot be deactivated by the driver.
Designed for most rigid body vehicles, including rigid box vehicles, tippers, mixers, coaches, and buses with a minimum length of 5.2m, the system comprises of six sensors and has – to date, reduced the risk of fatalities by an additional 84%.
“Drivers are particularly wary over the increase in freight traffic and it’s clear that trials of truck platooning will only exacerbate this concern.”
Another option is to fit Halo® or Red Zone® which can assist drivers in low light level situations
HALO® is one of SM UK’s own innovative products, designed and manufactured in-house. The pioneering system provides a visual warning to vulnerable road users that your vehicle is turning.
Combined with cameras, sensors and audible warning systems, the chances of a collision occurring are drastically reduced, making the road safer for drivers and vulnerable road users.
The HALO® system was designed to solve issues where vulnerable road users may be unable to hear or understand audible warnings. For situations where road users may be wearing headphones, there may be a language barrier, or loud road conditions may prevent those around your vehicle from hearing your turning warning, HALO® provides the solution.
HALO® Lighting - A visual warning to those down your nearside or offside, that your vehicle will be turning, flashes an amber ‘HALO’ on the ground in unison with your indicators.
These high intensity LED lights are also fitted with a speed switch, so that they are only activated by the indicator at lower speeds.
Perfect for vehicles working on site, you can clearly mark out your work area. Those working around your vehicle will clearly know when your vehicle is in operation, and how much space to allow you to work safely.
Red Zone® is one of SM UK’s innovative products, designed in-house to give drivers a clear warning.
Completely customisable, SM UK can create a ‘no-go’ area to take into consideration how and where your vehicle operates. Made up of several LEDs installed to the vehicle, they will be positioned so that they will not be knocked or interfered with during the normal operation of your vehicle.
Perfect for a number of commercial vehicles, including:
Steve MacDonald said: “We urge the Government to prioritise safety over capacity and to ensure that HGV fleet managers make sure they fit all the safety options to ensure a safer drive for all concerned.”
If you are concerned about road safety and want to get your fleet protected, get in touch today.