Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Tow Vehicles: Towing Safety Tech
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MikeRP

Westerville

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Posted: 10/30/20 07:21pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

So if you guys folks follow some of my posts, you probably know I think there’s a lot more to towing safely than just meeting the truck towing numbers (payload, GVWR, GCVWR, tire ratings, axle ratings, etc).

One thing I’d like to hear from people who use the newest tech, adaptive cruise, lane departure, and collision avoidance w stop.

With my truck, I have Waze up running for up to date road conditions, my eez tire tpms, my rear camera on the Coach, and my RV gps.

So the driver, me, can be on information overload. Both Ford and Ram have this adaptive stuff and I don’t know about GM..

So one way of looking at safety is near misses. So I’ve had a couple of hard stops with and without the Coach. It has bothered my wife and frankly is my impetus to upgrade the truck. Near misses can indicate you will eventually have an accident.

I know some totally don’t like this tech, however since I drive max 67-68. Mostly 65 hooked up. I’m feeling like adaptive cruise and the other options will help w distracted driving, assured clear distance consistency, and emergency stops

I have trained my self to drive w more assured clear distance and I haven’t had a hard stop in some time.

So for you that have used this tech, do you like it and are you using it consistently?

azdryheat

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Posted: 10/30/20 07:57pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The downside is, like the Tesla owners in recent crashes, drivers letting the car do all the decision making while the driver takes a nap and rear-ends a cop.

Perfect example is our airliners that do everything from takeoff to landing yet they still crash and lives are lost. Automation doesn't necessarily make things better.

My car has adaptive cruise and I like it. The Winni View I ferried today has adaptive cruise and I like that. But is it removing me from driving and paying attention? Is it making me a better driver?

Every airline pilot is there with a boatload of professional training. Even the weekend pilot in his Cessna has professional and recurrent training. Most every car/RV driver has had no professional training other than from mom and dad or the salesman. In Arizona a person gets their driver's license at 16 and has no further involvement with DMV until their 65th birthday. Professional training? Recurrent training? Huh? My RV company made me get a CDL with an airbrake endorsement to drive all the RV's we sell. The CDL wasn't hard to get but passing all the tests did require serious study. My CDL must also be renewed every 5 years. Should the everyday driver have the same same standard as a CDL? It's a start.

I think that before we automate cars, trucks, and RV's we first train the drivers to a higher standard. Professional training with re-current training just like in aviation. If people had to go through what a pilot has to endure 1) we wouldn't have so many drivers (gridlock would also go away) and 2) the drivers we do have will be a more mature and capable driver. It won't make the roads perfect but it will make them substantially safer. Then, perhaps, we might consider some automation.


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rhagfo

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Posted: 10/30/20 08:10pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The best tech besides more filling distance is to look further down the road in front of you. While I also pay attention to the vehicle in front of me I scan the entire road about 1/4 mile down the road. Also check mirrors often.


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Old-Biscuit

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Posted: 10/30/20 08:48pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

As a prior Control Operator in Power Plants I had 100's of gauges, recorders, annunciator alarms etc
One had to trust the instrumentation
BUT one could easily get 'information overload' and miss the real picture

I drive defensively...towing or not
Like 'rhagfo' I prefer to pay attention to what is going on in front/behind me using my eyes and instincts vs gadgets that can be distracting

Adaptive cruise, lane departure, and collision avoidance w stop might be OK...just have to get accustomed to. Sorta like when first using Cruise Control
Those features should not be a distraction


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Rover_Bill

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Posted: 10/30/20 10:23pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

No matter how many gadgets you have and how advanced they are, they are not going to stop the jerk in front of you from doing something stupid. It's best to pay full attention to the road and be prepared for anything to happen.

valhalla360

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Posted: 10/31/20 06:08am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Rover_Bill wrote:

No matter how many gadgets you have and how advanced they are, they are not going to stop the jerk in front of you from doing something stupid. It's best to pay full attention to the road and be prepared for anything to happen.


They may not stop the jerk from doing something stupid but if he randomly slams on the brakes, the computer is more likely to react in time to an unexpected stop.

This doesn't relieve you from paying attention but it's better in just about every way.

Some of the items listed shouldn't be a distraction. If you are wandering out of your lane, a warning is not a distraction, that should be a primary focus. Adaptive cruise actually reduces distractions.

Some of the items listed are low priority. TPMS, Rear Cameras, mapping programs...they provide benefit but don't need to be constantly monitored except in specific situations. Sure, if you are changing lanes, check the rear camera but just cruising down the road, it's not a high priority.


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MikeRP

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Posted: 10/31/20 06:48am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I agree that paying attention, driving defensively etc is job1. And adaptive cruise, lane departure and collision avoidance w stop, I see as an enhancement to safety not a primary driver.

BTW, I’ve been in the Utility business all my life also and controls and alarm systems can get tooo busy. A great operator always can look though the noise and find and act on the real problem and that experience is invaluable to the Utility.

The other stuff - tpms, and the camera are more convenience and integration which just lower clutter in the cab.

We’ll do you guys think these enhancement will be something you will be interested in when you buy a new truck?

2112

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Posted: 10/31/20 07:18am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Adaptive cruise, and me not being ready for it, got me a speeding citation last month in our new 2020 Ford Edge.

I had cruise set on 65 going with the flow in the inside lane. We enter city limits where the speed limit is reduced to 45, adapive cruise doing its thing. We approach an LEO in the center median. No problem, I'm doing <45. As I approach the LEO the car in front of me changes lanes, leaving open road in front of me. The adaptive cruise sped up to 55 before I realized what it was doing. It was trying to get back to 65. I was wrote up for doing 55 in a 45. $255 deferred.

Other than that, I like the technology.


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Thermoguy

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Posted: 10/31/20 10:17am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have a Ford Explorer with Adaptive cruise and all the other safety features. It is the best feature of all. Doesn't require thinking at all. I think it would be great in a tow vehicle. It's simple, if you are driving faster than the vehicle in front of you, it gradually slows down to the same speed. You can set the following distance, so with a trailer, you would set it far back. If someone cuts between you and the person you are following, it will slow to get that following distance in check. If someone slows or hits the brakes, it will do the same. Usually faster than I can think about it. When I drive my truck and trailer, I don't have this feature. I have to think about it, shut off cruise, etc. I think it is a great feature and should be in all new vehicles.

I haven't looked at the latest HD trucks. Do any offer Adaptive Cruise? I looked at 1/2 tons and Ford was the only one offering it. The GM guy told me that GM didn't think Adaptive cruise was safe when towing, which I disagree. But I'm sure that is just because they didn't have it. I'm, not sure about the 2021 trucks coming out. If given a choice, I would pay extra for it in any vehicle.

Groover

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Posted: 10/31/20 10:27am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

TPMS should have alarms set to alert you of problems so that you really don't need to monitor it.

Like any new tool adaptive cruise control has a learning curve but I do feel like the curve has been short and that overall it reduces stress and helps my safety.

"Near misses can indicate you will eventually have an accident."
Drive long enough and you will eventually have an accident. Even if you are a perfect driver stuff happens that is totally out of your control. The best defense is to minimize damage by driving at safe speeds, keeping room around you and making yourself easy to see by using your lights generously.

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