Volvo Trucks North America recently celebrated the success of its Volvo Enhanced Stability Technology with the delivery of the 50,000th VEST-equipped truck to Shamrock Foods of Phoenix. VEST is a full electronic stability program designed to assist the driver in maintaining control during emergency maneuvers and braking events, reducing the likelihood of a rollover or jackknife. It was made standard on all Volvo highway tractors in 2005.
To commemorate the 50,000th VEST-equipped truck assembled at Volvo’s New River Valley plant in Virginia, company officials presented a plaque to Mark Engdahl, enterprise director for Shamrock Foods, and Matt Miller, Shamrock’s enterprise operations manager, during a driver event in Phoenix. “VEST represents an enormous advancement in truck safety,” says Ron Huibers, senior vice president of sales and marketing for Volvo Trucks North America. “Volvo is proud to have played a leadership role in spreading the use of this technology out on the road.”
Shamrock Foods, a foodservice distributor, sends refrigerated trucks to 10 states from distribution centers in Phoenix, Commerce City (Denver) and Albuquerque, N.M. “VEST provides improved safety and peace of mind,” Miller says. “Volvo’s commitment to safety is one of the reasons we ordered 105 Volvo trucks this year. It means a lot to us that we are putting our drivers in trucks that are designed for safety as well as comfort and drivability.”
The VEST system – developed by Volvo in partnership with Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems – uses a steering angle sensor, a lateral acceleration sensor and algorithms to determine not only driver intent, but also vehicle response, in rapidly changing situations. It is designed to work by applying the brakes selectively on individual wheel ends if sensors detect a dangerous driving situation, which assists the driver in reducing speed, keeping the vehicle in proper alignment and decreasing the possibility of the truck and trailer sliding or jackknifing. The system also is designed to lower engine torque automatically and apply the engine brake more rapidly than a driver can do, reducing rollover potential – even on wet or snowy roads, black ice and exit ramps.