Fontaine Fifth Wheel is developing a new patent-pending camera system that will make it easier for truck drivers to properly couple and uncouple trailers.
The Dual Assist Camera System features two video cameras that work together to give the driver a clear picture of both the fifth wheel and approaching trailer.
Fontaine’s Dual Assist Camera System’s two cameras are mounted back-to-back behind the truck’s fifth wheel and wired to a display in the cab. They automatically turn on when the truck is shifted into reverse. As the tractor begins to back up to couple with a trailer, the in-cab monitor displays video from the rear-facing camera. Crosshairs are superimposed over the screen to help the driver properly center the vehicle.
The two cameras are situated low on the truck’s frame to prevent damage from the trailer’s kingpin. As the camera setup passes under the kingpin, the video feed in the cab automatically switches to the camera facing the fifth wheel. This allows the driver to watch the kingpin enter the throat of the fifth wheel and assists in the coupling process.
To keep dirt and debris from blurring the video picture, automatic shutters close over the camera lenses when the system is not in use. The cameras are heated, so they can be used in sub-freezing temperatures, and feature lights for nighttime operation.
The Dual Assist Camera System initial launch is planned for the fall of 2014.