Today, road injuries is the eighth leading cause of death globally. Every year approximately 1.35 million people die as a consequence of road traffic crashes and around 20 to 50 million others suffer non fatal injuries, at times leading to disabilities. Apart from the human impact, road crashes cost most of the countries 3% of their gross domestic product.
Ford with the fellowship of Vivacity Labs, Oxfordshire County Council and Loughborough University, with support from Transport for London has taken the initiative of developing an innovative, digital road safety tool. This tool, using data from sources like connected vehicles and roadside sensors, could help make travel safer by predicting the potential spots for accidents.
John Scott, the project lead, City Insights, Ford Mobility, Europe commented: “Soon every new vehicle will be a connected vehicle, and we see this as an opportunity to reduce road traffic incidents and save lives in a significant way. “ Through this comment it is evident that this device can help in improving travel for millions around the world.
The aim of developing this Data-Driver Safety Tool is to find a solution for the easy mobility of vehicles in the towns and cities and minimize the risks of road crashes or road traffic accidents. This tool will collect the information from connected vehicles, smart roadside sensors and local authorities and will analyse this information to predict the potential incident hotspots and its causes.
Extensive research has been conducted by Ford to help maintain roads safer. For the analysis of driver and vehicle data and how the connectivity of vehicles is going to be used in maintaining the safety on roads, 700 passengers and commercial vehicles are connected across Oxfordshire and London. This is a part of the 18 month project started to build the safety tool.
Two successful trials in London were conducted where analysts and data scientists from Ford Mobility sampled 1 million miles of driving by connected vehicles. This helped in analyzing and providing information to local authorities on various road safety hotspots in Greater London. Some recommendations for improvements were also provided like red-light cameras to prevent signal jumping and cutting off of vegetation to make sure one has a clear view of the road.
Ford Mobility is also working in other places with other authorities like Cologne, Germany, Spain and Valencia to analyse the information of connected vehicles and how roads can be made safe.