Press release: MAN technology reduces truck accidents

By: MAN Automotive Imports NZ Ltd


MAN NZ has introduced Electronic Stability Program (ESP) as standard on most of their truck models in a move aimed at reducing the number of heavy vehicle accidents on NZ roads.

Press release: MAN technology reduces truck accidents
MAN technology reduces truck accidents

Jason Cann, head of MAN NZ, said "Safety should always be the top priority, not just for the truck and driver but for all road users. The recent spate of truck rollovers highlights the value MAN advanced safety technology could have in reducing both the number of truck accidents and the negative publicity the heavy transport industry receives be-cause of them".

ESP is a function of the trucks electronic brake system and helps the driver in critical driving situations, such as when the vehicle breaks away or threatens to roll over when a bend is taken too quickly. It constantly monitors the ride dynamics of the vehicle and intervenes auto-matically using the engine management and brake systems if the ve-hicle is in danger of tipping over or skidding. ESP comprises two main functions: DSP (dynamic stability program) and ROP (rollover preven-tion).

Dynamic Stability Program

DSP mainly ensures that the vehicle remains stable (e.g. on wet roads, ice and snow). It intervenes only in the event of a low coefficient of friction when there is a noticeable difference between the direction the driver wants to take and the actual movement of the vehicle. By applying the brakes selectively at different wheels when the vehicle is under-steering or over-steering, the DSP generates compensating forces and torques. As a result, the vehicle is returned to safe driving situations without the intervention of the driver.

Rollover Prevention

Rollover Prevention (ROP) reduces the risk of the vehicle's overturning in the event of a high coefficient of friction on dry roads. By applying the brakes to all the wheels, the ROP prevents the vehicle from rolling over when bends have been negotiated too quickly.

Jason Cann believes the incidence of truck rollovers would be signifi-cantly reduced if all trucks were equipped with ESP. "According to NZTA, around one third of heavy vehicle crashes involve a rollover and research in Europe shows installing ESP in vehicles prevents 44 percent of all single vehicle accidents, so it's easy to see how ESP could contribute to a huge reduction in truck accidents".

Now rigid trucks and those towing trailers benefit with MAN ESP

MAN has a long history of technological leadership and while some manufacturers offer ESP it is generally only available on a limited range of models usually 4x2 and 6x4 tractor units based on a Euro-pean specification. MAN is the first to offer it broadly across their range of trucks including 8x4 rigids and tractors built for the NZ market and the recently developed ESP system for heavy duty rigid trucks towing trailers.

Especially when driving a loaded truck and trailer on a slippery road surface ESP prevents the dangerous jack-knife effect between truck and trailer on tight bends, cornering too fast, emergency braking and hectic evasive manoeuvres. If ESP is not present, these conditions can result in jack-knifing of the combination due to over-braking of the tractor and under-braking of the trailer which causes the rear wheels of the tractor to be pushed to one side.

By braking the trailer wheels in these situations, ESP stabilises the combination as a whole, and in this way prevents the vehicle from roll-ing over or veering to the left or right as a result of the jack-knife effect.

"NZTA say that more than half of heavy vehicle rollovers involve truck trailers so integrating the trailer into the ESP system will improve driv-ing safety considerably" says Jason Cann. "The unique benefit with MAN trucks is that you don't need an EBS trailer to get the advantage of DSP which means operators can utilise existing trailers saving time and money while improving safety in the process".

MAN offers a range of trucks from 250hp to 540hp starting with the medium duty TGL 4x2 up to the TGM, TGS and TGX models available in various cab, wheelbase, axle and suspension configurations tailored to suit individual operator requirements. MAN increased sales in NZ by 30% in 2012.

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