Lockheed Martin Information Systems has delivered a high fidelity, motion-based Truck Driver Trainer system to Werner Enterprises Inc. The Omaha, NE-based truckload carrier is the first commercial customer for Lockheed Martin’s driver-trainer system - and the first trucking industry venture to employ simulation-based training.

The system’s technology provides training without incurring the high costs associated with vehicle maintenance, wear and tear and fuel. Its capabilities include day and night views under a full spectrum of weather conditions, a high-definition terrain database, malfunction and road emergency response training, automated driver-performance assessment and intelligent traffic behaviors.

According to John Hallal, president of Lockheed Martin Information Systems, the simulation allows drivers to experience realistic vehicle handling characteristics in potentially dangerous situations without risk to themselves or their equipment, and to review their performance in near real time.

“Timely instruction, assessment and feedback reinforce the training experience, producing competent, confident drivers,” Hallal said. “Our years of experience with military trainers have shown indisputably that people perform better in emergency situations if they have been trained first within a simulated environment.”

Trainees are situated in actual vehicle cabins to maximize the “real-world” look and feel of the training experience. The Werner system includes an ergonomically advanced Freightliner cab. The system incorporates commercial-off-the-shelf visual and processing elements to reduce dependency on outside maintenance and allow for ease of future technology upgrades. The basic system can be modified to emulate any type of wheeled or tracked vehicle.