According to Stoneridge, a camera backing based system manufacturer, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has approved its new camera and LED monitor system to replace rear-view mirrors that are at least as safe as using mirrors, or safer.
Further benefits to truckers is a claimed 2.5% fuel cost savings as a result of lower wind drag by eliminating the large and not-so-wind-friendly mirrors residing on all trucks traveling on the road.
Stoneridge’s exemption was received in late December 2017. The company calls its solution the “MirrorEye Camera Monitor System,” or CMS for short. The CMS is installed as an alternative to standard conventional rear-vision mounted mirrors that are currently legally required on all commercial trucks within United States.
Currently, as of this writing, Stoneridge’s MirrorEye system is the only product with the exemption approved and has a monopoly on this type of technology. Unquestionably if this product is a success, and with a 2.5% fuel savings, it’s hard to imagine it won’t be, others are sure to follow in Stoneridge’s footsteps. The MirrorEye will enjoy first-mover advantage and is likely to remain the leader in this field for the foreseeable future.
With the MirrorEye system, truck owners are allowed to completely remove the installed rear-view mirrors on their trucks and use the camera / monitor system as a full replacement.
According to Jon DeGaynor, Stoneridge’s President and CEO “This decision will help bring an innovative driver vision technology to market that will greatly improve the safety of everyone who shares the road.
The MirrorEye Camera Monitor System empowers truck drivers to avoid potential collisions by the elimination of certain blind spots, expansion of their field of view and increased awareness of the truck’s surroundings. This exemption allows our customers to fully recognize both the safety and fuel economy benefits of MirrorEye.”
Fleet and driver feedback built into MirrorEye CMS technology
Leading fleets, including Maverick Transportation, J.B. Hunt and Schneider National, have provided vehicles, test drivers and invaluable feedback during a significant fleet evaluation period in order to ensure the MirrorEye CMS product meets driver and fleet requirements. Fleets have driven more than two million miles with the MirrorEye system, and it has received outstanding reviews from professional truck drivers.
“Thank you to the leaders in the trucking industry who have tested, provided input, and helped validate the effectiveness and reliability of this safety technology,” said DeGaynor. “Stoneridge would like to especially acknowledge the American Trucking Associations (ATA), Truckload Carriers Association (TCA), Trucking Alliance, Spangenberg Partners and numerous individuals of the trucking community who have supported our mission of improved safety.”
Fleet trial participants noted that they would feel unsafe returning to conventional mirrors after using the MirrorEye system.
“MirrorEye technology was designed and improved based on real input from commercial vehicles drivers during testing,” said Stephen Fox, Vice President of Business Development, Stoneridge. “We have collected a tremendous amount of data and challenged the system in real-life scenarios. We are fully confident MirrorEye CMS will provide exceptional reliability and resolve many of the safety issues commercial vehicle drivers currently face.”
From Stoneridge’s Press Release:
MirrorEye CMS delivers improved driver vision and blind spot elimination
Stoneridge’s MirrorEye CMS has been proven to meet or exceed the visibility requirements of conventional mirrors by providing the following enhanced vision benefits:
- Greater field of view and elimination of common blind spots — Three views, including wide angle, narrow angle and passenger-side “look-down” cameras, greatly expand the driver’s field of view and eliminate blind spots
- Fail-safe design — Independent video processing of multiple camera images ensures that in the unlikely event of an individual camera failure, the other camera images continue to be displayed. Real-time images are continuously displayed without interruption.
- Augmented and enhanced vision quality — High-definition digital cameras provide color night vision, low light sensitivity, glare reduction and trailer panning capabilities.
- Trailer panning tracks the end of the trailer — The CMS automatically tracks the end of the trailer to keep it in view while the vehicle is moving forward. This feature could eliminate right-hand turn collisions with motorists and pedestrians.
In addition to the marked safety benefits, MirrorEye CMS also enables improved fuel economy via the aerodynamic design of the exterior camera arms. Third-party and real-world testing have shown that MirrorEye equipped vehicles can expect up to 2.5% fuel economy improvements.
The five-year FMCSA exemption allows MirrorEye-equipped trucks to operate with an integrated system of cameras and digital displays as an alternative to conventional rear-vision mirrors.
To learn more about Stoneridge MirrorEye CMS and Stoneridge’s other innovative commercial vehicle and automotive technologies, please visit Stoneridge.com.
About Stoneridge, Inc.
Stoneridge, Inc., headquartered in Novi, Michigan, is an independent designer and manufacturer of highly engineered electrical and electronic components, modules and systems principally for the automotive, commercial vehicle, motorcycle, agricultural and off-highway vehicle markets. Additional information about Stoneridge can be found at Stoneridge.com.
Robert Weinstein is a husband, dad, stock market junkie, real estate broker, and of course…Insurance agent. Interests include my family, economics, marketing, technology, real estate, finance/investing, history, and Asia.
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