FCAM Could Reduce Bakken Trucking Accidents

A post on the Truck Safety Coalition website suggests that forward collision avoidance and mitigation (FCAM) with automated emergency braking could reduce the disastrous effects of trucking accidents in the Bakken and beyond. It is estimated that large trucks strike vehicles in the United States about 75,000 times per year. These accidents are responsible for about 15,000 injuries and 300 fatalities. With truck freight volume expected to rise 45 percent by 2040, the potential for more accidents will also rise without new safety measures.

FCAM technology uses radar and/or sensors to detect an imminent collision and automatically slow the vehicle. Automated emergency braking systems react quicker than even the most experienced truck drivers.

Reducing the Frequency of Rear-end Collisions

Research conducted over the past decade affirms the efficacy of various forward collision avoidance systems. One FCAM manufacturer claims large trucks equipped with its system experienced an 87 percent decrease in rear-end collisions. A 2009 study concluded that FCAM reduced large truck accidents by 23.8 percent. When University of Michigan researchers looked at forward collision mitigation systems, they calculated that they could reduce deaths in rear-end collisions by 44 percent.

The newer radar-based FCAM systems can even handle snow squalls, thick fog and heavy rain. When visibility is suddenly reduced to minimal distances, the automated emergency braking included in such system may avert a rear-end collision.

Future Mandate Possible

In 2015, various safety organizations asked the National Highway Safety and Traffic Administration(NHTSA) to require such systems on trucks in the future. NHTSA responded by beginning a process that may lead to future FCAM mandates. The agency responded affirmatively, saying that, “FCAM systems have the potential to save lives by preventing or reducing the severity of rear-end crashes."

If you or a family member is a victim in a Bakken truck crash, we make it possible for you to consult with an attorney about the matter free of charge. Our firm fights hard to get our clients all the compensation they deserve under the law. To learn more about our legal services, please contact us.