XTL Transport is the latest major North American carrier to reinforce its commitment to safety by choosing advanced technologies from Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems.
On a recent order of 100 International ProStar tractors, XTL spec’d 80 units with Bendix’s collision mitigation system, Wingman Fusion, as well as with the Bendix ESP Electronic Stability Program full-stability system and the Bendix CVS web portal, SafetyDirect. XTL also equipped all 100 tractors with Bendix ADB22X air disc brakes on all axles. Since model year 2014, XTL has spec’d the Bendix ADB22X fleetwide. Most of the 100 vehicles are operating now, with all expected to be on the road by fall.
In business for 30 years, XTL is headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, and includes five terminals spread across Canada. Running throughout Canada and the East Coast of the United States, XTL specializes in hauling commercial goods, pharmaceuticals, and paper. Its fleet includes upwards of 350 company-owned power units and more than 1,200 trailers of various types.
“Safety has been a core commitment at XTL since our business was founded, and installing state-of-the-art technology is a key part of our safety strategy,” said Jason Wood, XTL director of fleet maintenance. “Bendix technologies meet our strict requirements for proven systems that help make our vehicles and drivers safer while offering a return on investment. The technologies help our skilled team of professional drivers to reduce fatigue and better focus on what’s happening on the road in front of them – and provide what we think of as a guardian angel behind them.”
“Our number one cause of accidents at XTL is rear-end collisions,” Wood said. “We studied Wingman Fusion and evaluated the cost to install it versus the cost of just one major accident, and we determined it would pay for itself. This is the industry’s only system where the camera and radar talk to each other, and we wanted that unique safety advantage for our drivers.”
Bendix Wingman Fusion integrates a road-tested suite of Bendix safety technologies – radar, camera, and the vehicle’s brake system – into a driver assistance system. Wingman Fusion combines and cross-checks information from multiple sources to deliver enhanced rear-end collision mitigation, alerts when speeding, and braking on stationary vehicles, the company said. Bendix Wingman Fusion also helps drivers avoid additional crash situations, including rollovers, loss-of-control, and sideswipe crashes, while prioritizing alerts to help reduce driver distraction, the company added.
With video, radar, and other sensors working together, and not just in parallel, the system realizes events sooner – alerting the driver and decreasing the vehicle’s speed up to twice as much – to help the driver mitigate potential collisions or lessen their severity. It is built on Bendix ESP (Electronic Stability Program), which helps drivers mitigate rollover and loss-of-control situations. The Wingman Fusion system camera is powered by the Mobileye System-on-Chip EyeQ processor.
The reception for Wingman Fusion has been positive among XTL’s drivers, according to Wood. One veteran driver, who had been concerned the system would interfere with the way he drives, is now among its biggest proponents after experiencing the technology in action. “I don’t ever want to go back to not having a system,” he told Wood.
XTL also chose Bendix’s web portal, SafetyDirect, for all the vehicles spec’d with Wingman Fusion and Bendix ESP. Linked to onboard safety technologies, the system wirelessly and automatically – via an onboard telematics system – transmits real-time driver performance data and event-based information – including video – to the fleet’s back office for analysis by fleet safety personnel.
“The Bendix ADB22X offers straight, stable stops along with greater reliability due to virtually no brake fade or degradation of stopping power,” the company said. “Uptime benefits of the technology include longer brake lining life and quicker pad replacement, leading to lower maintenance costs. The internal self-adjustment mechanism can help lower the risk of out-of-adjustment brakes during roadside inspections, which can affect Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) scoring. While routine maintenance is still important with any brake system, air disc brakes – unlike drum brakes – do not require any additional maintenance associated with out-of-adjustment brakes.”
“We congratulate XTL Transport on its commitment to safety and are proud to be their partner in helping make our roadways safer,” said Scott Burkhart, Bendix vice president – sales, marketing, and business development. “Bendix advanced technologies work in conjunction with safe driving practices and continuous driver training to help save lives, reduce accidents, ensure the safety of drivers, and protect safety records.”