(MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.) At the conclusion of 2018, an estimated 51 percent of freight miles within the U.S. are now in states that have approved commercial truck platooning, based on US Department of Transportation Data. This landscape represents a tremendous change in the regulation of commercial platooning — a technology which allows drivers to link their vehicles’ active safety systems to enable vehicle following at an aerodynamic following distance. This regulatory advancement arises from states looking to stay ahead of the technological curve, and an industry that is focused on enhancing fuel efficiency while maintaining the safety of America’s roadways. To date, 18 states have amended or clarified their traffic laws to allow full commercial platooning on highways. Because states regulate vehicle following distance, state laws can be clarified or amended to allow platooning on roadways—and these clarifications and amendments are happening rapidly.
In 2016, Michigan became the first state to clarify that commercial deployment of platooning is allowed. Since then, 17 states have followed suit. An additional eight states now allow limited commercial deployment or testing of platooning technologies.
“We are pleased to see how rapidly states have updated their laws in recognition of the immense possibilities this technology offers,” said Steve Boyd, co-founder and VP, external affairs, Peloton Technology. “This is an industry-wide effort to bring innovation to America’s roads, and we look forward to collaborating with industry partners and state officials across the nation to deliver this innovation safely and responsibly.”
Commercial truck platooning is an emerging technology which is on the cusp of commercialization. Peloton’s SAE Level 1 platooning system, PlatoonPro, builds upon state-of-the-art safety features like adaptive cruise control and forward collision avoidance which are linked together while trucks platoon. Peloton’s Network Operations Cloud (NOC) supervises the trucks at all times while platooning and only allows trucks to link up on suitable multi-lane, divided, limited access highways.
SAE Level 1 platooning keeps drivers fully engaged at all times, is not autonomous technology, and enhances driver teamwork by allowing for direct communications between the drivers as they navigate the highway. Commercial truck platooning that is entering the marketplace allows the drivers of two trucks to coordinate their speeds and closely follow one another. The technology leverages vehicle-to-vehicle communications to connect the braking and acceleration between platooned trucks.
Using platooning technology, the follow truck begins braking immediately after – or even before – the lead driver applies the brakes. Trucks using this smart technology save fuel through reduced aerodynamic drag. In addition, the synchronization between platooned trucks can reduce traffic congestion overall.
As technology continues to evolve, regulation within the transport sector will evolve in tandem. In the midst of these changes, Peloton Technology executives say they are working to stay abreast of these trends and to collaborate with government and industry stakeholders.
About Peloton: Peloton is a connected and automated vehicle technology company dedicated to improving the safety and efficiency of U.S. and global freight transportation. Backed by ten Fortune Global 500 companies, Silicon Valley-based Peloton partners with customers to deliver innovative tools that save fuel, provide safety, and improve operational insight through connectivity, automation, and advanced data analytics. Peloton’s flagship driver-assistive platooning system links the active safety systems of pairs of trucks and connects them to a cloud-based Network Operations Cloud (NOC) that limits platooning to appropriate roads and conditions. Peloton solutions also require best-in-class forward collision avoidance systems and other safety features, thereby incentivizing their adoption. For more information, visit www.peloton-tech.com and follow Peloton on Twitter @pelotontech.
Peloton Technology Contact:
Rod McLane, VP of Marketing
+1 (925) 399-1892