Univ. of Michigan Transportation Research Institute Equips Cars with Safety Technology image

The University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute plans to equip all vehicles with safety technology which will help prevent crashes.

UMTRI, the U.S. Department of Transportation and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration initiated the $22 million Safety Pilot/Model Deployment to test how the technology applies in the real world. The project is the largest connected-vehicle, street-level pilot in the Western Hemisphere.
Wireless communication devices will be installed on about 3,000 cars allowing vehicles ‘communicate’ to each other, to the traffic lights and other road signals from intersections and curves on a test-pilot area in northeast Ann Arbor, Michigan.

The equipment will send information about the vehicle’s speed, location and position, to alert drivers of a possible crash situation: a sudden lane change, a nearby vehicle unexpectedly braking, merging traffic and so on. The driver will be alerted by a warning sound or flashing red light inside their cars.

“There are all kinds of safety and convenience applications to this, as well as applications related to mobility and sustainability,” said program manager Jim Sayer, an associate research scientist at UMTRI. “This is a tremendous opportunity, and we are very excited to be able to support the USDOT’s demonstration of cutting-edge transportation technologies in our community.”