In an attempt to reduce fuel consumption in the trucking industry, semi tractor may be outfitted with “trucktails.”

The trucktail — proposed by inventor Ben-Tommy Eriksen — requires a full sized door in the back of the trailer rather than two half-sized doors, and the “tail” folds out from a flat starting point (so the tail can be retracted when the owner-operator or driver needs to unload.

The “truck tail” is designed to increase the aerodynamics of the vehicle, but it has another potential benefit to drivers in general.

The tail is filled with air (or perhaps, another soft material such as sponge or foam), and this means that any vehicle bumping into the rear of the tractor-trailer will meet a soft “bumper” for several feet before actually coming into contact with the metal parts of the truck.

What do you think? Could this actually work on the road as you see it?