Maximizing Trucking Safety: Guide to Blind Spot Detection

Table of Contents

Blind spots on commercial vehicles are a serious threat to safety and that’s when blind spot detection systems come into play. These systems use various technologies such as cameras, sensors, and radars to detect objects and other vehicles in blind areas. This manual provides truckers with a comprehensive introduction to truck blind spot detection systems, their benefits, and how drivers can choose the right system for their vehicle.

Understanding Truck Blind Spot Detection System

Blind spot detection systems complement truck safety features such as collision avoidance, lane departure warning, and automated emergency brake systems. Combining these devices can increase the vehicle's safety and the safety of all those around it.

Sensor-based, camera-based, and radar-based are the three main types of blind spot detection systems available for trucks. 

  • Sensor-based systems use ultrasonic sensors mounted on the sides and back of the truck to detect objects or vehicles within the blind zone. 
  • Camera-based systems use cameras to provide real-time visual feeds of any objects that may be in the blind zone. 
  • Radar-based systems use radar sensors to detect the distance and speed between moving objects or vehicles within the blind zone.

How to Choose the Best Blind Spot Detection System?

Your truck’s model, driving style, and budget will all influence which system you choose. Therefore, when selecting a blind-spot detection system, you should consider the following:

  • Identify what types of systems your truck can support. 
  • Do you have any personal preferences between sensor-based, camera-based, or radar-based systems?
  • Look for a system that can accurately identify objects or vehicles in the blind zones of your truck.
  • Consider the system's features, including adaptive cruise control (ACC), lane departure warnings, and collision prevention, for example.
  • Find a system that fits your budget.

Best Blind Spot Detection Systems for Trucks

Blind Spot Radar by Preco Electronics

Blind Spot Radar by Preco Electronics is a radar-based technology that uses four sensors to detect objects and vehicles in blind areas. It warns drivers via an audio and visual display.

Mobileye Shield+ 

Mobileye Shield+ is a camera-based system that uses artificial intelligence to detect pedestrians, bicyclists, and other objects, even in blind areas. If anything is detected in a blinds pot, the system alerts drivers visually and audibly.

Bosch Trailer Safety System

The Bosch Trailer Safety System uses ultrasonic sensors to detect stationary and moving objects in blind zones.

Truckers can purchase blind spot detection devices from many sources, including truck equipment providers, manufacturers, and online merchants. Walmart, eBay, and Amazon are some of the most well-known online merchants.

Blind Spot Detection Systems Installation and Maintenance

When installing a blind-spot detection system, it is essential to consider the type and complexity of the system. Installation involves:

  • Positioning sensors or cameras
  • Connecting to the truck's onboard computer and its power supply
  • Appropriately calibrating the system

Some blind spot detection systems require regular sensor or camera cleaning, while others need software updates and regular calibration. Without proper installation and maintenance, blind spot detection systems can be prone to false alarms, camera, radar or sensor failures, and software bugs. Following your respective  manufacturer's troubleshooting and maintenance instructions is essential to ensure that the blind spot detection system works at its best.

How to use blind spot detection systems on trucks?

Blind spot detection systems are essential for truck safety but they are not a perfect solution to blind spot awareness. Truck drivers must use blind spot detection systems as instructed and follow recommended manual practices to ensure maximum safety:

  • Blind spots and mirrors should be checked regularly. Blind spot detection technology cannot replace mirror usage or visual inspections. To ensure that your blind spot detection system detects other vehicles or obstacles, you should check your blind spots and mirrors frequently.
  • Keep sensors and cameras clean. A blind spot detection system can be affected by a dirty or blocked sensor or camera. Therefore, truckers must keep them clean and free of debris.
  • To ensure the best performance, system calibration should be performed regularly. In addition, truckers must follow the calibration instructions provided by the manufacturer.

Blind spot detection systems may miss some objects and vehicles if they have not been trained to recognize them or if they display a faulty read. Therefore, drivers of trucks must be aware that the system has limitations and take extra precautions when necessary.

If you are part of a carrier team, regularly train and inform truckers on how they can optimize their safety using  blind spot detection devices and the manual processes mentioned above. 

The Future of Blind Spot Detection Systems in the Trucking Industry

Blind spot detection systems are constantly improving and updating to enhance safety and performance. The following are some new developments in blind spot technology for trucks:

  • Integration with other safety systems: Blind spot detection systems can now be integrated with automated emergency braking systems and lane departure alert systems to increase safety.
  • Artificial intelligence (AI): Blind-spot detection systems can use AI to improve object recognition accuracy and reduce false alarms.
  • IoT Connectivity: To improve situational awareness, the blind spot detection system can be connected to other vehicles and infrastructure, such as traffic lights and road signs.

Final thoughts

Blind spot detection systems play a vital role in truck safety, enhancing the truck driver's vision and situational awareness and reducing the possibilities for accidents. Selecting the right blind spot detection system is crucial to achieving road safety. Truckers who want to contribute to a more efficient and safer transportation system must invest in blind spot detection devices in addition to all of the other things they do to prioritize safety. Blind spot detection technology will likely lead to continued innovation and progress in trucking safety.

Related Articles

Start driving with CloudTrucks!

Have questions? Give us a call at (469) 250-1214