Intelligent approach to road safety
With rapid economic growth over the last two decades, India is witnessing exponential growth in the number of motorized vehicles. Despite significant upgrade and expansion of the road network, the situation with regard to road traffic has reached crisis proportions. As a result, gridlock on Indian roads, poor quality of air particularly in our cities and fatalities and injuries resulting from road accidents are alarmingly high. With increasing urbanization, the situation is only likely to worsen.
While India will continue to add to the number of lane miles to address growth in demand, over-Transport professionals acknowledge that we cannot "build our way out of those problems" and Dependence on this approach is fraught with diminishing returns. Moreover, it would still not address the problem of poor air quality and death and injury caused by traffic accidents. have increasingly turned to Information and Communication technologies to develop Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) for solutions. ITS deployment impacts transportation in the areas of safety, mobility, efficiency, productivity, energy, environment and most importantly customer
Satisfaction. Each of these areas has its own set of performance measures, such as change in crash rates/ travel time reliability/ level of service/ cost savings/ fuel savings and reduced pollutant emissions etc.Around "connected vehicles " and "autonomous vehicles ".Our contemporary situation however At some point in the distant future, we will move to a revolutionary eco-system developed
Demands an immediate response with induction of existing technologies. These include the use of alternate fuels such as biogas and bio-diesel, and rapid induction of hybrid technologies in India.
Signal Phase and Timing (Spat) applications for better Arterial Management, better Highway Vehicle and infrastructure safety systems through "connected vehicles "has helped to decrease Management through Variable Speed Limit Systems (VSL) and introduction of Integrated Corridor Management (ICM) has all shown their efficacy the world over. The integration of Crashes/ fatalities by up to 57 per cent. Portable Traffic Management Systems (PTMS) which monitor traffic conditions and communicate with vehicles/drivers help to improve situational awareness, harmonies traffic flows and lessen impact of reduced capacity at work zones.
Creation of Transport Management Centers provides not only more responsive but even predictive traffic operation strategies on real-time basis.
Similarly, benefit-cost analysis of Incident Management Systems shows a high return on investment with B/C ratios ranging from 4:1 to over 38:1. Deploying ITS technologies for transit operations and fleet management can help improve service reliability, decrease running time, reduce delays at intersections, reduce missed trips, and allow for increased service without additional staff or vehicles. Emergency management, Traveler Information and Driver Assistance are other areas which will see huge benefits with use of ITS, as would intermodal freight management and Electronic Payment and Pricing.
With such potential benefits, it is indeed surprising that India is yet to get its act together in application of ITS,
notwithstanding our claimed prowess in Information Technologies. The closest to a National ITS Policy in India is a Chapter in the Report of the National Transport Development Committee (2012) which outlines a simple, rudimentary plan omitting several important technologies and applications relevant for India. Moreover, the time frames suggested for implementation go up to 20 years. In fact, it would not be incorrect to conclude that India currently lacks a coherent ITS Policy or Vision.
Besides addressing the current problems of road traffic and smart mobility, the widespread use of ITS can help to transform the Indian transport system and urban transport in particular. Using ITS, Indian cities can leapfrog into the real 21st century and offer their residents Smart mobility in sync with the Smart City programmed that the government has launched.
\Given the vast and varied applications of ITS technologies, a single policy framework may be completely inadequate. A better alternative would be to outline a Vision on ITS, and allow for the several smaller bits to fall into place. An effort to develop such a Vision Document is being undertaken by the International Road Federation (IRF) a not-for-profit organization based out of Geneva through a series of High Level Roundtables on ITS to be held in New Delhi commencing with the first Conclave on 10 November 2016.
This initiative reportedly supported by the government's think tank Niti Aayog as also the ministry of the Road transport Highway
The Round tables will examine all issues impacting the roll-out of ITS in India including the legal manufacture of ITS products and solutions in the country .Being a "sunrise "industry and given and regulatory framework as also identify the fiscal and other incentives for encouraging the that the size of the ITS market in India and its near neighborhood is estimated at over $5 billion annually ,the ITS industry has the potential to add serious heft to the prime minister ‘s "Make in India initiative".
From the economic growth perspective, ITS is a "strategic "sector which brings together several critical technologies representing the future. With a coherent ITS framework, and widespread adoption of ITS Solutions, India has the potential to become a world leader in ITS. The moot question is, will our captains of industry take the plunge to emerge as true Global leaders in this emerging sector or will they continue to play second fiddle as agents of manufacturers abroad, adding to Indian import dependence.