Scania aims to use Euro NCAP testing to make safer trucks

Scania aims to use Euro NCAP testing to make safer trucks

Euro NCAP heavy truck testing goes beyond legal demands to push for increased safety, especially for cyclists and pedestrians.

Scania participated at NCAP 24 in Munich, Germany, a conference where a new system for safety testing of heavy trucks was officially presented by the Euro NCAP organiza­tion. The first round of test results will be disclosed in November this year. Scania tells us that the Euro NCAP testing of heavy trucks goes beyond legal demands.

“We see the Euro NCAP initiative as part of a new and interesting aspect in our develop­ment pro­cesses,” says Jacob Thärnå, head of sustainable transports at Scania Trucks. “We at Scania have a solid reputation for our longstanding work with both active and passive safety in and around our trucks. The Euro NCAP testing will hopefully inspire the whole industry to step up their game and reach for the Euro NCAP stars.

“Assessing safety-related functionality in trucks is a lot more complicated task than it is for passenger cars,” says Thärnå. “Heavy trucks are very diverse and they are made that way for a reason. Euro NCAP’s approach to start on a small scale and learn as they go is a wise decision; it is complicated, for instance, to evaluate basic functions like road handling and maneuverability while they are both extremely im­portant – and brand differentiating – from a safety aspect.”

According to Euro NCAP, heavy goods vehicles represent 1.5% of all vehicles on Europe’s roads but are involved in 15% of all road deaths. The organization believes part of the reason is that trucks are driven longer distances – often up to 10 times more – than cars, but it is still a fact that heavy trucks are over-represented in deadly crashes.

“The sheer size of trucks and their need for space are contributing factors, and that is why advanced driver assisting systems are so valuable,” says Thärnå. “We see a rapid deve­lopment and use of sensors and cameras, and from Scania’s side we are convinced that they will help drive further increased safety for trucks as well. One should not have blind faith in support systems though; direct vision and skilled drivers are still basic and essential for true safety.”

Euro NCAP and ‘safer trucks’

In 2023, Euro NCAP started its journey to provide accurate and detailed safety information about heavy trucks (HGVs). Euro NCAP aims to help many countries across Europe achieve their ‘Vision Zero’ target and end traffic-related fatalities. At the same time Euro NCAP says it wishes to motivate truck manufacturers, fleet operators, haulers and city and road authorities to consider safety as a strategic business goal, creating a safer environment for trucks drivers and other road users

Vision Zero for road casualties will not be achieved without taking action to improve the safety performance of commercial vehicles, Euro NCAP adds.

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