Eaton VORAD debuts Backspotter system

May 1, 2005
EATON Corporation is introducing the Eaton VORAD BackSpotter, a new rear object detection system designed to warn drivers that they are approaching an

EATON Corporation is introducing the Eaton VORAD BackSpotter, a new rear object detection system designed to warn drivers that they are approaching an object behind the vehicle while in reverse. BackSpotter features radar-based technology that is effective in detecting objects under poor visibility conditions such as rain, snow, sun glare, and during the night — when mirrors and camera systems fall short in delivering the safety that customers demand.

“Eaton VORAD BackSpotter has been designed for our customers' working environment,” said Jeffrey Barylak, VORAD global marketing manager. “BackSpotter delivers a new environmentally rugged radome cover coupled with a robust commercial vehicle wiring harness and connector, providing a new product package that will keep delivering the value and quality to our customer base.”

The Eaton VORAD BackSpotter helps drivers avoid collisions when backing up medium-duty straight trucks and vehicles including delivery trucks and tankwagons. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that the potential of preventing back-up accidents is better than 90% with a back-up alert system.

The Eaton VORAD BackSpotter engages when the vehicle is in reverse gear. It detects stationary and moving objects in an area up to 15 feet wide by 15 feet long behind a vehicle. When BackSpotter detects an object in the coverage area, the display unit illuminates the proper range indicator and sounds an audible alert to give the driver warning that an object has been detected. As the object closes in, the next range indicator is illuminated. Because visual alerts may not be enough of a warning, BackSpotter also provides audible tones that coincide with one of the five range indicators. The buzzer tone rate increases as the vehicle continues to approach the object.

“Due to customer requests we have added an external back-up audible alarm feature to the BackSpotter,” said Barylak. “The feature provides the capability to accommodate an external back-up audible alarm (such as an external speaker) when an object is detected.” The speaker is not included.

In addition to the BackSpotter, Eaton markets a complete Eaton VORAD Collision Warning System that includes forward and side radar sensors to detect objects and vehicles in the vehicle's intended path that may pose a hazard. In-cab display units with a series of warning lights and audible tones are used to warn the driver of the presence of these objects and vehicles. These warnings give the driver added time to take any necessary action to avoid a collision. Eaton VORAD systems are available with the optional SmartCruise, adaptive cruise control that helps maintain safe distances between vehicles. Accident recording and reconstruction and fleet information management systems are also available.

The Eaton VORAD BackSpotter product is only offered as a stand-alone after-market system. It can be used in concert with other Eaton VORAD Collision-Warning Systems. BackSpotter can be purchased online at the Roadranger Store,, using Visa or MasterCard.