Traffic congestion is an unpleasant reality of life in modern cities. It is omnipresent and for the most part inescapable. Due to its dynamic nature, changes in traffic flow can occur suddenly and without warning. Hence, traffic systems need to be nimble to adapt to these changes. Traffic systems of the future are expected to act smartly to counter traffic jams and congestion.
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Previously, technology was not affordable or scalable enough to provide data to manage traffic in a realistic manner. However, advances in modern technology in the form of internet of things and connectivity through Bluetooth sensors now make it possible to roll-out traffic management systems across entire cities. Congested central business districts and other areas that see a very crowded rush hour can benefit from the implementation of intelligent traffic system technologies.
Traffic counting and video analytics
Cameras installed across highways and other routes prone to congestion can yield data on the number of vehicles on the road at any given time. In-depth analysis of this information can help planners understand the type of traffic on the street and figure out the routes most prone to congestion for targeted interventions. Video analytics can also help in easing congestion by detecting traffic accidents as soon as they occur and providing alerts to divert traffic to less affected areas.
Traffic light systems
Intelligent traffic light systems are important to ensure that traffic lights react to the changes in the traffic flow. Road congestion can also be reduced if intelligent traffic signals can control the pedestrian crossings on the roads, minimizing the time delays caused by pauses at crossings with no pedestrians.
Automatic number plate recognition
Intelligent traffic management is also assisted by technologies like automatic number plate recognition which monitors the used routes and number of times the vehicle pass an area. This can help anticipate travel routes and compute congestion points.
Bluetooth sensors and Internet of things
Advances in Bluetooth sensor technologies can also help in detecting the flow of traffic. The advantage of this intelligent traffic system is that the data is anonymous and only data points are available to traffic managers with no other personal details like the vehicle number. Sensors fitted in the traffic environment like speed breakers and traffic posts can also transmit information of surrounding vehicles.
Traffic management solutions are worthwhile in the long run.