Renault Trucks Anti-runaway Automated Park Brake has won the ‘Innovation Award’ at the 2018 Motor Transport Awards, held at London’s Grosvenor House Hotel on July 5th.

Praised by the judges for providing ‘significant increased safety’, Renault Trucks is the first OEM to offer the anti-runaway system, which eliminates the risk of uncontrolled vehicle movements caused by human error when a truck is idling or static.

Receiving the Innovation Award on behalf of Renault Trucks, Commercial Director Nigel Butler said: “The safety of operators and the wider public is an absolute priority for Renault Trucks and all vehicle operators, so we are delighted that our innovative Anti-runaway Automated Park Brake has been recognised by the Motor Transport judging panel. It is a great example of how by taking an innovative approach to real life problems, Renault Trucks delivers innovative solutions – this time to prevent avoidable accidents.”

He continued: “Vehicle runaway situations remain too common and can have tragic consequences. It only takes a slight incline for 44 tonnes to start rolling, which becomes a very serious problem, very quickly.  Renault Trucks’ Anti-runaway Automated Park Brake prevents the problem before it arises.”

A UK initiative, developed in close partnership with a major fleet operator and Renault Trucks Lyon’s engineering team, the safety back-up device is available on Range T, K, C 2.5 and other models which have electronic park brakes. In the event of the driver’s door being opened at speeds of up to 3mph (5kmh), the device activates the park brake automatically.

The key innovation in the application is in taking an existing passive safety system, in this case the electronic park brake, and configuring it in such a way as to provide a specific solution to a determined safety risk. While third party retro-fit solutions have been marketed which claim to reduce the risk of vehicle runaways, Renault Trucks’ innovation integrates fully with the vehicle’s in-built capability and other vehicle systems to provide a seamless solution to a recognised in-service safety issue. This approach ensures that the feature functions and communicates in the same way as other vehicle systems, including in this case a series of visual messages communicated to the driver through the instrument panel.

Recognising the benefits of the Anti-Runaway Automated Park Brake to operators internationally, the UK solution has now been approved for other markets and is available as a factory-fit option.