Long-haul trucking is just that—a haul. Fatigue and distraction are part of the gig, and drivers often resort to unhealthy and sometimes illegal measures to maintain their focus. Drug use among the driving population is well-documented, but the demands of the job and competitive nature of the industry continue to push drivers to unhealthy and unsafe limits. So, what can be done? Well, for starters, drivers can put on a hat.
The Ford SafeCap was developed by Ford along with Sao Paulo-based creative agency GTB, in celebration of the company’s 60 years of truck production in Brazil. Given the dangers that fatigue and distracted driving presented to their trucking partners, Ford conducted research to determine which head movements were associated with these issues and then fitted a hat with sensors and a gyroscope that will emit sound, light and vibrations when they’re detected, snapping the driver back into focus.
“The SafeCap is another example of our commitment to utilizing technology both in our vehicles and also in broader driving culture to make life easier and safer for our customers,” said Lyle Watters, the President of Ford South America.
While the hat was initially designed as a one-off, since its release there have been thousands of inquiries about purchase options. Ford hopes to make the technology more widely available within the next year.
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