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Bendix says Intellipark earning positive feedback from fleets, drivers



Intellipark replaces the traditional air parking brakes with illuminated electronic switches – helping prevent rollaway and runaway crashes. Easy to use and driver friendly, it delivers parking brake status on both the tractor and trailer. (Courtesy: BENDIX CVS)

ELYRIA, Ohio — Currently on the road in intensive pilot programs with three of North America’s 25 largest for-hire carriers, the Bendix Intellipark Electronic Parking Brake continues to earn positive feedback from fleets and drivers alike, and will be available for OE release and retrofit installation in the fourth quarter of this year, according to officials at Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems.

Rebecca Carter, Bendix product manager for specialty valves, said Intellipark offers driver-friendly operational benefits while helping prevent rollaway and runaway crashes by automatically setting the parking brakes if the driver exits the vehicle while it’s unparked.

“Fleets have enthusiastically responded to this technology because it can be such a game changer when you look at how it can enhance safety and driver satisfaction,” Carter said. “Nearly 60 percent of fleet managers who participated in a Frost & Sullivan survey confirmed that they had experienced a rollaway in a 24-month period. We all know that accidents happen, but rollaways can be incredibly damaging – if not deadly – and come at a great cost to fleets in terms of money, resources, and reputation. And all because the parking brake didn’t get set properly or was released accidentally. Intellipark can help make these kinds of incidents – and their repercussions – a thing of the past. Throughout our testing, we’ve heard repeatedly that even the most experienced drivers are glad to have a backup parking brake system in place to help keep them safe.”

Bendix also engineered the Intellipark Electronic Parking Brake with an eye on improving the driving experience for the men and women behind the wheel.

“It just makes sense that the engineers who introduced the MV-3 dash control valve to the industry 30 years ago are now advancing parking brake technology to a whole new level for fleets,” Carter said.

Gone are the red and yellow push/pull knobs known for delivering the “sting” that comes with activating a 120-psi brake: Intellipark replaces them with switches that are quickly recognized (they bear the well-known red and yellow brake valve symbols), easy to flip, and pain-free. They also clearly display the brakes’ status.

“There’s a tremendous amount of enthusiasm and excitement about the brake indicator interface,” Carter said. “Drivers are now able to view the trailer parking brake status at a glance, thanks to the LEDs integrated into the switches. They’ve never been able to do that from looking at the knobs. And the ease of activation is particularly valuable to bus drivers, because the vast majority have to engage and disengage parking brakes at every stop.”

Intellipark’s rollaway prevention capability is made possible through interlocks installed in critical areas such as the seat belt or cab door, which can engage the parking brake electronically if the driver exits the vehicle without setting the brake first.

Fleets can also use information from the data Intellipark provides through a vehicle’s J1939 communications network to enhance their safety programs and driver training efforts. Intellipark is currently available for order, with a widespread market release planned for the second half of 2019.

“Bendix’s own vehicle testing, along with the real-world experiences of test fleets, means that Intellipark has been put through the wringer for durability, extreme temperatures, vibration, thermal shock, humidity, corrosion – just about anything you can imagine out there on the road, Intellipark has been exposed to it, over hundreds of thousands of park and auto-park cycles,” Carter said. “And because of the high interest from fleets, not only are we supporting truck OEMs with Intellipark availability, but it will also be part of our Retrofit Upgrade Program portfolio beginning in October.”

The Bendix Retrofit Upgrade Program is a unique, first-of-its-kind program that enables professional installation of an expanding portfolio of Bendix advanced safety technologies – including Intellipark electronic parking brake – to upgrade vehicles that did not come factory-equipped. The Bendix Retrofit Program features two key elements: a comprehensive website that enables vehicle operators to determine retrofit opportunities per vehicle, and an escalating network of Bendix Authorized Retrofit Dealers and Distributors (ARDs) to facilitate the professional installation.

With a phased-in introduction that began in 2017, the program has already been eagerly adopted by a growing list of major fleets across North America with upgrade installations taking place daily.

Intellipark can be used on almost any air-braked vehicle, including tractor-trailers, single-unit trucks, motorcoaches, and school buses. Bendix stresses, however, that while it is designed to help drivers mitigate a variety of unsafe situations, no technology replaces the need for safe drivers practicing safe driving habits, or the support of ongoing, proactive driver training.

For more information about Bendix safety systems and technologies, visit or call 800-247-2725.

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Lippert Components introduces somnum Sleeper Series pillows for long-haul drivers




The machine washable somnum Sleeper Series pillows are made with hypoallergenic down-alternative fill, and the covers are 100% cotton, 350 thread count and double stitched to increase the lifespan of the pillow. (Courtesy: LIPPERT COMPONENTS)

ELKHART, Ind. — Lippert Components (LCI), a supplier of highly engineered components to the mobile and leisure transportation industries, has introduced somnum Sleeper Series pillows for long-haul, heavy truck drivers.

These machine washable pillows are made with hypoallergenic down-alternative fill, and the covers are 100% cotton, 350 thread count and double stitched to increase the lifespan of the pillow.

Designed to endure the ever-fluctuating temperatures and persistent moisture commonly found in sleeper environments, somnum premium pillows provide the perfect balance of support and comfort for a good night’s sleep, helping increase driver alertness while on the road, according to Mike Padrnos, business development manager at LCI.

Featuring both soft and firm options, the pillows come in two sizes, jumbo and king.

In addition to their premium comfort level, the somnum Sleeper Series pillows are 100% machine-washable, making it easier for them to retain their original freshness and shape, Padrnos

“A key purpose of a pillow is to keep your neck comfortably and safely aligned with your spine,” he said. “Having a great pillow contributes to a good night’s sleep when you’re at home. That being said, pillow quality is just as important for truck drivers who travel long hours and sleep in their trucks.”

Padrnos that while alignment is important, LCI had also paid special attention to personal comfort by ensuring that the somnum Sleeper Series features a variety of different pillow options.

“Everyone has their own personal preferences, so we created both soft and firm pillow options,” he said.

Padrnos said that in the fall of 2018, Donna Mooney, vice president of human resources at Titan Transfer, a freight carrier company, sought to find a “different and unique” gift for the company’s 400-plus trucks and corresponding drivers for Newsal Truck Driver Appreciation Week.

“We tried all the typical items: polo shirts, hats, gift cards, etc. I spent quite a bit of time online, shopping to find just the right gift,” Mooney said. “The somnum pillow caught my interest. The pillows ended up being a tremendous hit with our drivers, so much so that we had several drivers order additional pillows for their residential homes.”

“We’ve heard that truck drivers love somnum pillows from direct feedback at truck shows and from fleets like Titan Transfer that have introduced them to their drivers through their company stores or given them out as driver gifts. A new pillow is a small but meaningful upgrade to a Class 8 sleeper berth,” Padrnos said. “Fleets that are using somnum pillows as part of their driver incentive/reward programs are receiving gratitude from drivers for such a thoughtful gesture. Realistically, many people aren’t replacing their pillows nearly enough.”

For more information about somnum Sleeper Series pillows and how they can be purchased for your driver appreciation program, email [email protected].

For more information, contact [email protected]




Navistar to make capital investments at Huntsville engine plant




The principal engine currently built at Navistar's Huntsville plant is the International A26, a 12.4 liter big-bore engine that is offered in Class 8 on-highway trucks. (Courtesy: NAVISTAR)

LISLE, Ill. — Navistar, a maker of commercial trucks and buses, has decided to make capital investments of approximately $125 million in new and expanded manufacturing facilities in the state of Alabama, the company said Monday.

The investment will bring 145 additional jobs to the company’s Huntsville facility.

The company, which already manufactures International brand diesel engines at the plant, plans to make the new investments over the next three years.

Its intent is to produce next-generation big-bore powertrains developed with its global alliance partner TRATON, formerly known as Volkswagen Truck & Bus AG.

“Over the last two decades, the state of Alabama has been a wonderful partner for Navistar as we have developed and produced big-bore engines and other products in the state,” said Persio Lisboa, Navistar’s executive vice president and chief operating officer. “Today, we are excited to have the opportunity to expand our presence in Alabama, while adding to our array of next-generation products.”

The principal engine currently built at Navistar’s Huntsville plant is the International A26, a 12.4 liter big-bore engine that is offered in Class 8 on-highway trucks such as the International LT Series and RH Series, as well as in vocational trucks such as the International HV Series and HX Series.

“Navistar has been a longstanding corporate partner in our community and we are glad to see the company continues to see Huntsville as a strategic part of their growth strategy,” said Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle. “We welcome the new production component to Navistar’s manufacturing operations and look forward to a successful future.”

Navistar International Corp. is a holding company whose subsidiaries and affiliates produce International brand commercial and military trucks, proprietary diesel engines, and IC Bus brand school and commercial buses. An affiliate also provides truck and diesel engine service parts. Another affiliate offers financing services.

Additional information is available at .



Talbert Manufacturing opens 58,000-square-foot expansion




In 2018, Talbert began expansion of the building and staff as part of its overall growth plan. The opening of the expansion marks the completion of the Liberty Trailer upgrade. (Courtesy: TALBERT MANUFACTURING)

RENSSELAER, Ind. — Talbert Manufacturing, a North American provider of specialized heavy-haul solutions, recently officially opening the 58,000-square-foot expansion of its Liberty, North Carolina, facility.

The 120,000-square-foot Liberty Trailers will manufacture Talbert’s Tag-A-Long Series, Traveling Axle Series and Hydraulic Tail Series trailers.

With the expansion, Talbert looks to increase dealer and customer support throughout North America with increased production capabilities and a support staff of 60 associates, according to President Andrew Tanner.

“In 1938, Austin Talbert set out to change the heavy-haul industry,” Tanner said. “With the expansion of Liberty Trailers, Talbert Manufacturing is closer than ever to realizing his vision of customer-driven design that meets the ever-changing needs of the hauling industry. We’re able to double our current output, allowing us meet the needs of our Tag-A-Long customers and dealers across the U.S. and Canada so we can continue growing together.”

The Liberty facility was originally home to Ferree Trailers, which Talbert purchased in 2014. The 60,000-square-foot building was completed in 1999.

From there, Ferree served a following of customers in industries including transportation, construction, military, government and special OEM companies, producing a wide array of trailers.

With the acquisition, Talbert continued producing select Ferree products and moved production of its Tag-A-Long, Traveling Axle and Hydraulic Tail series trailers from their Indiana facility to Liberty.

As the OEM grew, so did demand for the trailer series being produced at Liberty. In 2018, Talbert began expansion of the building and staff as part of its overall growth plan, Tanner said.

The opening of the expansion marks the completion of the Liberty Trailer upgrade.

In addition to the 58,000-square-foot increase in space, the expansion also houses two state-of-the-art painting booths, overhead cranes and a large finishing area. Equipment and staging areas were designed for optimum flow throughout the manufacturing process, allowing Talbert’s production at Liberty to grow, even past their current goals, while maintaining the high degree of safety, durability and resale value that are the pillars of the Talbert brand.

“When we purchased the facility in 2014, we had 18 employees and a modern facility to allow for the type of growth we needed,” Tanner said. “Today we have 60 employees at Liberty and are looking to staff well over 100 long-term. Talbert has been able to remain on the cutting edge of heavy-haul innovations for more than 80 years because we understand the value of investing in our people as much as our products. The Liberty expansion is an investment not just in Talbert, but in our dealers and customers.”

Talbert has been building heavy-haul and specialized trailers to customer specifications since 1938.

For more information, visit .









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