DOT has awarded Eaton Corp. a $6.7-million contract to develop a next-generation crash-warning system for heavy-duty trucks. Eaton is one of five suppliers participating in the agency's Integrated Vehicle-Based Safety Systems (IVBSS) program.

IVBSS has been established to create an integrated warning system that will alert drivers when they are about to go off the road, are in danger of colliding with another vehicle during a lane change, or are at risk of hitting the vehicle in front of them.

The commercial vehicle portion of the system will be created at Eaton's Innovation Center in Milwaukee, WI, where engineers will combine lane-departure warning technology, which involves camera-based vision and image processing, with Eaton's radar-based technology. According to Eaton, the new integrated system “is expected to prevent conflicting warnings and reduce false alarms and unintended consequences, such as causing a road departure crash while trying to prevent a rear-end crash.”