Bendix says its Intellipark Electronic Parking Brake, which it expects to be available for OE release and retrofit installation later this year, is earning positive feedback from fleets and drivers in pilot programs.
Intellipark is designed to offer driver-friendly operational benefits while helping prevent rollaway and runaway crashes by automatically setting the parking brakes if the driver exits the vehicle while it’s unparked.
The system currently is in road testing with three of the largest for-hire carriers in North America, Bendix said.
“Fleets have enthusiastically responded to this technology because it can be such a game changer when you look at how it can enhance safety and driver satisfaction,” said Rebecca Carter, Bendix product manager for specialty valves. “Nearly 60% of fleet managers who participated in a Frost & Sullivan survey confirmed that they had experienced a rollaway in a 24-month period. We all know that accidents happen, but rollaways can be incredibly damaging—if not deadly—and come at a great cost to fleets in terms of money, resources and reputation. And all because the parking brake didn’t get set properly or was released accidentally.
“Intellipark can help make these kinds of incidents—and their repercussions—a thing of the past. Throughout our testing, we’ve heard repeatedly that even the most experienced drivers are glad to have a backup parking brake system in place to help keep them safe.”
Bendix also engineered Intellipark with an eye on improving the driving experience for the men and women behind the wheel, the company said.
“It just makes sense that the engineers who introduced the MV-3 dash control valve to the industry 30 years ago are now advancing parking brake technology to a whole new level for fleets,” Carter said.
Intellipark replaces the red and yellow push/pull knobs that typically activate a truck’s 120-psi brake with recognizable switches (they bear red and yellow brake valve symbols) that are easy to flip and “pain-free.”
“Drivers are now able to view the trailer parking brake status at a glance, thanks to the LEDs integrated into the switches,” Carter said. “They’ve never been able to do that from looking at the knobs.”
Intellipark’s rollaway prevention capability is made possible through interlocks installed in critical areas, such as the seat belt or cab door, which can engage the parking brake electronically if the driver exits the vehicle without setting the brake first.
Fleets also can use information from the data Intellipark provides through a vehicle’s J1939 communications network to enhance their safety programs and driver training efforts.
“Bendix’s own vehicle testing, along with the real-world experiences of test fleets, means that Intellipark has been put through the wringer for durability, extreme temperatures, vibration, thermal shock, humidity, corrosion—just about anything you can imagine out there on the road, Intellipark has been exposed to it, over hundreds of thousands of park and auto-park cycles,” Carter said.
“And because of the high interest from fleets, not only are we supporting truck OEMs with Intellipark availability, but it will also be part of our Retrofit Upgrade Program portfolio beginning in October.”
For more information about Bendix safety systems and technologies, visit www.bendix.com or call 1-800-247-2725.