Refuse and recycling trucks are some of the busiest big vehicles on the road, and spend most of their time navigating streets that are filled with other vehicles, as well as pedestrians and other potentially dangerous obstacles. To protect their drivers and trucks from potential harm, fleet managers are increasingly turning to camera systems that can provide views of both the drivers themselves and the roadway around them, offering multiple ways to improve safety.
Mack Trucks has recognized the benefits of such systems and recently announced a collaboration agreement with Lytx, a California-based manufacturer of cameras and software solutions. This has led to the offering of a pre-wire option for Lytx camera equipment on Mack LR, TerraPro and Granite models for the refuse and recycling industry.
Connectivity and telematics are key areas that Mack has fully embraced in recent years, so bringing a safety tool like the Lytx offerings makes sense, according to Curtis Dorwart, Mack refuse product manager.
"Mack has been an industry leader in bringing those sorts of features to the entire industry," Dorwart said during a recent ride-and-drive event. "Beyond just analytics, beyond just ELD, we also can do things regarding prognostics, be able to predict and monitor a truck when it's driving down a road. And if there's a problem, we'll fix it.
"And there's a big component of safety in that as well. That safety component, and how we're enhancing safety with all of our connected services, includes bringing in Lytx pre-wired."
The pre-wire offering means that customers who want to include Lytx in their truck can do so with ease.
Adding a camera "without having to do any additional wiring, getting to the dashboard, and causing potential problems down the road . . . leaving it as simple and upfit-ready as possible" is the goal, Dorwart said.
When a customer installs the Lytx DriveCam system in their truck, they gain the opportunity to review any risky occurrences that may happen while their driver is on the road. Kristin Costas, Lytx director, product development, said the system captures exception-based video that gives insight on what happened ahead of - and inside - the truck at the time of that particular incident.
Sensors in the Lytx device, mounted in the truck cab, trigger when something like sudden braking or acceleration occur, Costas described.
"If there's a lane departure warning or forward collision warning, we'll capture 12 seconds of video, and then we review that video to identify behaviours that are happening," Costas said. "So, whether the driver is wearing their seatbelt, for example, or whether they have proper following distance - all of that is delivered to the customer in a package that allows them to have a really meaningful conversation through our coaching workflow.