Truck platooning is an concept that could be beneficial to all drivers on the highway, including those behind the wheel of heavy-duty trucks. This idea was developed in order to conserve space and fuel as well as increase safety on major highways.
Platooning is when vehicles are grouped together, with a large commercial truck in the lead and two or three every day vehicles following. The development of platooning was designed to use electronic and mechanical systems to “drive” the following vehicles at a specific speed and distance apart.
While an actual person is in control of the leading commercial truck, an advanced technological system is responsible for controlling the following vehicles. With this latest technology, when the truck makes a specific move, such as slowing down or stopping, the technology signals the vehicles in the rear to do the same.
Rather than change the infrastructure of the highway, the benefits of the platooning system are:
- Eliminate the occurrence of “shock waves” where when one vehicle brakes hard and fast, the vehicle behind brakes harder and faster, and so on. This could prevent many highway accidents.
- Professional highly trained drivers, such as truck drivers, lead the platoon.
- Distances are computer controlled, but the leading vehicle’s driver also monitors the system. The cars communicate each other and run on wireless network technology.
- Large vehicles such as a commercial truck provide better aerodynamics within all of the vehicles by blocking out the wind.
- The technology controlled vehicles saves up to 20% in fuel costs.
Passengers in the following vehicles have less worry about their driving and can perform tasks otherwise not permitted while behind the wheel such as calling and texting.
There is still much research and testing to be done on platooning, but it could one day be an advancement that makes the highway a little safer.
If you are looking to pursue a career in commercial truck driving, contact Platinum Drivers today.