The new Mercedes‑Benz eCitaro raises electromobility for city buses to a new level – and this also applies to the safety level of the fully electrically powered bus, which will celebrate its public premiere at the International Commercial Vehicle Show (IAA) in Hanover in September.
Well before delivery of the first customer vehicle, everything has been prepared for the introduction of high-voltage technology, from the training concept for employees to an extension of the rescue guidelines. This means that right from the start, the eCitaro is a fully-fledged part of the integral safety concept of Mercedes-Benz.
Detailed information on working with high-voltage components
Electromobility and high-voltage technology are governed by their own rules, which is why Mercedes-Benz offers an all-round service for the new eCitaro: the service brand Omniplus has developed a specific training concept for the employees of transport operators. A specially equipped demonstration workshop shows the hardware required for safe handling of high-voltage components. In parallel with the introduction of the eCitaro, the rescue guideline for buses bearing the Mercedes star has had a chapter specially added for the eCitaro – Mercedes-Benz and Omniplus have thought of everything.
The onboard voltage of the eCitaro can be up to 750 volts – which means that not only workshop personnel, but also the rescue services must be prepared in advance. The guideline informs the latter about the locations of the high-voltage components, and the positions of the emergency cutoff switches next to the driver’s seat and behind the charger socket flap. Operating these switches and turning the ignition key makes the eCitaro voltage-free. All electrical circuits are interrupted, and the voltage declines. Rescue services can then go into action in safety.
All high-voltage lines in the eCitaro are coloured a distinctive orange and are particularly resistant, or they are routed through an orange sleeve. All high-voltage components are marked with the prominent, bright yellow warning symbol for high voltage. Another aspect of the specific safety concept for the eCitaro is the impact-protected location of the battery modules in the rear of the electric bus.
Rescue services have already been able to download the rescue guidelines for Mercedes‑Benz buses for years. These provide specific information about all the city, intercity and touring coach model series, and about the wide range of different drive systems including natural gas and electric drive.
The integral safety concept from Mercedes-Benz
Rescue information forms part of the integral safety concept of Mercedes-Benz. The focus of this concept is on accident prevention with the support of innovative and unique assistance systems. In regular service city buses these include e.g. the new active braking assistant Preventive Brake Assist with pedestrian recognition, and the likewise new Sideguard Assist. Should an accident occur nonetheless, the focus is on mitigating the consequences. The Citaro and eCitaro are also equipped for this, for example with front impact protection and the high-strength annular construction of the bus body – and finally with the guidelines for rescue services.