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February 17, 2016 9:00 AM, EST
Wabash to Introduce New Rear Impact Guard
Wabash National
Trailer maker Wabash National Corp. will introduce a new rear impact guard option at the end of February at a major industry conference, the manufacturer said Feb. 16.

The RIG-16 Rear Underride Guard System will make its debut at the Technology & Maintenance Council’s annual meeting in Nashville, Tennessee.

Lafayette, Indiana-based Wabash also said truckload and dedicated carrier J.B. Hunt Transport Services has ordered 4,000 dry vans with the RIG-16 option and production on them started in January.

Wabash also said the new system — patent pending — is available in limited production and is scheduled to increase over 18 months.

“We have been building our rear impact guards to exceed U.S. and Canadian standards since 2007, but we haven’t stopped there,” Wabash CEO Dick Giromini said. “For the past three years, we have spent considerable time, money and facility resources [in research and development] specifically focused on enhancing rear impact guard performance.”

“At J.B. Hunt, we value safety above all else,” Hunt CEO John Roberts said. “We applaud Wabash National’s leadership and advancements in rear impact protection, and we’re proud to be the first fleet to specify the new rear impact guard design.”

Wabash said the new rear impact guard is made of advanced high-strength steel. The design features two additional vertical posts and a longer, reinforced bumper tube, all of which are engineered to work together to absorb energy better and deflect rear impact at any point along the bumper. In addition, the new guard is fully galvanized to resist corrosion, the company said.

Underride guards hang below the rear of a trailer to prevent automobiles from sliding underneath during a crash. Such accidents can cause severe personal injuries without protection.