Edition 1487
11 August 2018
Edition: 1487

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Smart roads to end fatalities

by Brendan de Beer, in News · 19-04-2018 14:07:00 · 5 Comments

This week, plans were detailed as to how Portugal is aiming to drastically cut fatalities on the nation’s roads and slash fuel emissions through the application of a network of intelligent roads by 2050. In order to achieve these ambitious goals, Portugal will initially be investing 8.35 million euros over the next two years to have a selection of vehicles connected to the ground-breaking technology. Hopes are first vehicles operating under the system will be taking to the roads during the course of next year.

Smart roads to end fatalities

The project, developed by C-Roads and co-funded by the European Union, will be installed on just under 1,000 kilometres of Portuguese roads.
Road Safety Director of Infraestruturas de Portugal (IP) Ana Tomaz, was on Thursday quoted as telling DN/Dinheiro Vivo that “more than 90 percent of all accidents are the result of human error and the aim to is minimise the consequences of these mistakes. We have to invest in a new generation of roads in order to gradually reduce the number of fatalities to zero by the year 2050.”
C-Roads Portugal consists in the deployment of five intelligent transport system pilot cases, covering relevant sections of the core network and comprehensive network and of its two urban nodes.
The project will cover major routes, including the Lisbon-Algarve A2 motorway, the Algarve’s A22 and the urban areas of Lisbon and Porto.
According to C-Roads, these systems will encompass a group of technologies and applications that allow effective data exchange through wireless communication technologies between components and parties of the transport system, very often between vehicles or between vehicles and infrastructure.
Once the system has been successfully implemented in Portugal, services will run along 964 kilometres. In total 212 roadside units will be installed in addition to 180 on-board units fitted to 162 vehicles in operation.
C-Roads, in addition to Portugal, will also operate in 16 other EU member states. According to the organisation, the deployment of the system is an evolutionary process that will start with the less complex use cases. These are referred to as “Day-1-services”, encompassing messages about traffic jams, hazardous locations, road-works and slow or stationary vehicles, as well as weather information and speed advice to harmonise traffic. Using probe vehicle and infrastructure-related data, “all services will be transmitted directly into the vehicles in a way that allows users to be informed, but not distracted.”
The technology comes at a time when the number of cars on national roads continues to climb strongly, resulting in greater traffic congestion and fuel emissions. It is estimated that there will be around 6.5 million cars in Portugal by the year 2022, which is 12 percent on the figure for 2015. There are also concerns that the recent upswing in road fatalities, following decades of successive drops, can also be explained to this increase in road users.
In the meantime, the first step here in Portugal will be the creation of a smartphone application that will enable the sharing of information between motorists and the intelligent transport systems, followed by tests which are initially set to cover around 460 kilometres of the national road network.
While this new technology has received the backing of both Brussels and Lisbon, C-Roads concede that several stumbling blocks remain unresolved including legal, organisational and administrative issues as well as implementation and procurement issues.

Comments

If the tax on new cars was reduced, then the average of cars on Portuguese roads would fall, with better safety built in for newer cars. Smart systems like this do nothing to reduce head on crashes on back roads, collisions that can be survived in modern cars.
by Nick Bowles from Porto on 24-04-2018 09:33:00
Perhaps instead of technology being introduced they could improve the state of the EN125 highway across the Algarve. This surely would help reduce the unacceptably high number of collisions in this area.
by Iain from Algarve on 22-04-2018 11:43:00
If they chose to spend the 8.3 million euros on repairs to road surfaces roads would be much safer. The roads they are investing in are not the ones causing the most deaths.
This technology seems a waste of time and money.
by Dave lamb from Alentejo on 21-04-2018 12:37:00
Sounds like Waze. Sounds like a waste of money. Feed the data into Waze.
by William from UK on 20-04-2018 11:13:00
It appears that once again the EU - via various governments is using a, 'one glove fits all' and a ' sledgehammer to crack a nut'. I do not believe this government came up with this idea by themselves.
It is obvious to anyone with an ounce of sense that if traffic increases so do accidents. However, the government here is determined to keep these tolls on the A road systems which, since the introduction and the removal of, 'ten free journeys a month' system. The non-toll roads have become very busy and, at times, clogged.
Isn't the right thing to do first? Turn off the overhead gantries. Which incidentally costs more to operate than it gets in revenue? This will alleviate the traffic congestion and reduce accidents and, at the same time increase the 'happy feeling' tourists who have deserted Portugal because of the unpopular, costly and difficult, to operate road toll system.
Will the Portuguese government wake up and smell the coffee?
I doubt it.
by Ken from Beiras on 20-04-2018 10:29:00

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Edition 1487
11 August 2018
Edition: 1487

Read this week's issue online exactly as it appears in print.

Twitter

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