The transportation sector is constantly improving, and nearly every week there are new technologies and innovations to help improve both comfort and safety. Daimler Buses bring some of the latest advances in the bus sector by taking the lead in incorporating an emergency brake booster capable of automatically stopping when there are pedestrians nearby.
Improving technology to prevent traffic collisions is a serious matter in the United States. In 2015, there were over 5,300 pedestrians killed in traffic crashes and 129,000 pedestrians were brought to the emergency room with non-fatal injuries. Those who are most at risk are elderly pedestrians, over the age of 65, who make up 19% of all pedestrian deaths, and young children. Collisions between vehicles and pedestrians typically happen in urban areas, when there isn’t an intersection and at night.
The Mercedes-Benz and Setra buses will be equipped with the new Active Brake Assist 4 (ABA 4) during the first half of 2018 and will be the first in the world to have this function developed, especially for this type of vehicle. The innovation is based on technology used in Mercedes-Benz passenger cars.
Similarly, to the cars of the Mercedes brand, the Mercedes and Sertra buses will be equipped with radar systems for short and long distances. In this way, buses will be able to detect, in advance, pedestrians from a distance of up to 260 feet and autonomously brake in case there is a risk of collision. The system can even detect pedestrians and vehicles located on one side of the front of the bus. The system will also be able to detect cyclists and other vehicles at distances of up to 500 and 820 feet respectively.
The system will alert the bus driver through visual and auditory indicators before operating, so that the driver can avoid the impact by touching the horn, braking or bypassing whenever possible. The first bus models to include the new ABA 4 system will be the Mercedes-Benz Tourism and the ComfortClass 500 and TopClass 500 from Setra. The new system does not entail an additional cost for all vehicles that already have the Distance Controlled Tempomat (ART), since ABA 4 is based on the same radar technique.
The ABA 4 will be available for the Mercedes-Benz Tourismo as well as the Setra touring buses in Spring 2018. The technology will come at no additional cost for customers who opt for the autonomous intelligent cruise control option (ART) when purchasing the vehicles. While it may be a while before the technology is widely implemented in other cars and vehicles, hopefully it will become a trend to help minimize pedestrian injuries and automobile accidents.