Camera system could soon replace mirrors

Stoneridge has replaced side mirrors with cameras that provide complete visibility into blind spots.

Truck safety could take a big leap forward if drivers could see in their blind spots. Many companies are offering radar that looks down the vehicle and transmits that information back to the cab, but one company has decided the best approach is to eliminate the vehicle’s mirrors altogether.

Stoneridge expects its MirrorEye system to be available in the first quarter of 2018. A company that has been producing components for nearly 40 years, Stoneridge has developed a camera system that removes the mirrors but provides a driver with complete visibility around his vehicle.

Removing the mirrors provides a 2-3% fuel savings, the company said. Inside the cab, drivers have a 12.3-in. high definition display on their left and a 15-in. display on their right. In the middle top of the window is another display, giving the driver complete visibility from 5-6 cameras mounted on the vehicle.

The displays show blind spots as well as the entire length of the trailer in full color and cameras, which are heated for easy defrosting, are shielded from the weather to ensure a clear view.

Schneider National, J.B. Hunt and Maverick Transportation are all testing the system.

Currently, it is not legal to remove side mirrors from trucks, but Stoneridge has shown the system to federal regulators and is seeking an exemption that would allow the removal. The system can be legally installed, company officials said, now without removing the vehicle’s mirrors.

As a truck turns, the cameras pan so the driver continues to have full visibility. The system also features an advanced image handling system that adjusts visibility in direct sunlight so drivers are not blinded and can continue to see clearly.

Full production of the system is expected in the first quarter of 2018.

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Brian Straight

Brian Straight covers general transportation news and leads the editorial team as Managing Editor. A journalism graduate of the University of Rhode Island, he has covered everything from a presidential election, to professional sports and Little League baseball, and for more than 10 years has covered trucking and logistics. Before joining FreightWaves, he was previously responsible for the editorial quality and production of Fleet Owner magazine and Brian lives in Connecticut with his wife and two kids and spends his time coaching his son’s baseball team, golfing with his daughter, and pursuing his never-ending quest to become a professional bowler.

One Comment

  1. I’m sorry, this is so stupid. As a professional truck driver I totally disagree with this idea. You think this will help reduce driver fatigue, it’s no big deal to me to check my mirrors as a driver, that comes with being a trucker, it’s about safety, this is not safe. And 2 to 3% fuel savings, come on, if a driver or trucking company is more concerned about this little bit of savings over safety, I won’t work for them. And here is another thing I’m concerned about, I’m also a motorcyclist, is this fancy camera system going to be able to pick up an image or see something like that, I mean a lot of people sure don’t see us or someone on a bike. And what about backing up and using a dock, hey thanks for letting me say something. I’m just saying. Steve.

  2. I’ve been using this system for a month now, and i have to say, it works better for seeing things than the mirrors have, but the backing still needs a little work. These have a much better field of view than standard mirrors, almost replacing the hood mirrors, even from their location in the picture. Try not to judge (steve…) this tech before looking into it more. It’s great, and completely prevents being blinded by high beams from rear vehicles, improving safety. For night use, they’re great. Day use, they’re still great.