Truckmakers go to great lengths to design trucks so they don't slip and slide on the road, but one maker hopes at least one of its trucks will do just that in the interests of road safety.
Isuzu has handed over a heavy-duty Giga to the Driver Education Centre of Australia (DECA) to be used to teach drivers what happens when a truck gets into a slide and how to see it coming.
DECA is one of the nation's leading driver-training providers, playing a vital role in road safety.
“There has been an increase in the size and mass of vehicles,” DECA managing director Ian Bushby says.
“Driving trucks has become more complex, especially with advances in technology.
“While we see professional coaches are employed to keep our athletes up-to-date, we also see a need for coaches to keep professional drivers up-to-date.”
He says there is a lot more interest from companies wanting to satisfy their compliance issues, including chain of responsibility requirements, occupational health and safety compliance and a number of other issues.
While the mandatory compliance issues are driving companies to invest more in employees' health and safety, there is also a desire in the industry to reduce the accident rate.
The Giga EXZ prime mover, an engineering pilot vehicle that has been used to evaluate and develop the 390kW truck Isuzu will launch here in B-double specification next year, will be used by DECA in its driver training programs.
“The skid pan teaches drivers by way of demonstration what happens to a vehicle when it enters a skid and the subsequent trailer movement,” Bushby says.
“It is designed to teach drivers how to recognise when they are in trouble; most truck rollovers and skidding occurs without the driver realising until it is too late.”
Isuzu has a long-standing relationship with DECA through its Giga Accreditation program, designed to provide its dealer sales staff with comprehensive heavy vehicle training and expertise.
Isuzu national sales and marketing director Phil Taylor says; "The program provides our staff with important industry information and background coupled with specific skills and techniques required to confidently and successfully operate heavy vehicles.”