Today, Jan. 23, at the World of Concrete show in Las Vegas, LifeGuard Technologies – in partnership with Oshkosh Truck – introduced LifeGuard RollTek on the S-Series front discharge mixers. This introduction marks the integration of the first-ever rollover protection system on a concrete mixer truck, according to LifeGuard.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 60 percent of occupant fatalities in large trucks involve a rollover. Within the concrete industry, rollovers are a commonly reported occurrence, according to a National Ready Mixed Concrete Association survey compiled in 2003. Respondents from the 42 participating companies reported 136 rollovers occurring in 2000 and 2001, with 52 percent resulting in bodily injury to the driver and 2 percent resulting in fatalities.
LifeGuard RollTek, originally developed by LifeGuard Technologies in 2003, is designed to help protect truck drivers by deploying advanced seatbelt technology in sync with integrated airbags to significantly reduce the potential for death or serious injury in a rollover accident.
According to the company, a sensor inside the cab monitors the truck’s stability, and if it detects an imminent rollover, it initiates three events that all take place within a quarter-second: First, the system tightens the driver’s seatbelt to minimize movement; second, it pulls down the suspension seat to its lowest position to increase survivable space between the driver’s head and the roof of the vehicle; and third, the system inflates a side airbag to cushion head impact and reduce head and neck injuries during the rollover.
Engineers from LifeGuard Technologies and Oshkosh Trucks conducted an extensive testing program at the Center for Advanced Product Evaluation to help ensure product performance within the S-Series cab, LifeGuard says. Test results showed significant reductions in injury criteria when RollTek was implemented, according to the company.
“In our roll testing with the Oshkosh S-Series cab at CAPE, we’ve seen a drastic reduction in head injury numbers – from potentially serious head injuries in baseline tests, to walk-away events when RollTek is deployed,” says Steve Eickenroht, director of sales for LifeGuard Technologies. “This is hard evidence that RollTek can significantly reduce driver head and neck injuries in a rollover event.”
RollTek, which is available on the majority of fire apparatus, is helping protect thousands of firefighters in more than 400 communities, 40 states and five countries, according to the company. For more information, go to www.rolltek.com.