Transport for London has confirmed it will road-test speed-limiting technology within the M25 area.
As reported by ZDNet UK's sister site silicon.com last year, TfL announced a six-month trial of the Intelligent Speed Adaptation
(ISA) tech will start this summer, with the aim of exploring ways of
reducing road deaths. The transport organisation is investing £45m in
road safety in London in 2008/09, up from £18m in 2000.
utilises GPS location positioning tech and TfL's digital speed-limit
map of London to determine when to limit a driver's acceleration so he
or she keeps within the speed limit. The limiting feature can be
disabled, at which point the device will merely advise the driver of
the current speed limit and warn them if they exceed it. There is also
an override switch that will disable the unit entirely.
London bus, a licensed taxi and 20 TfL vehicles used by its road
engineers, traffic managers and highway inspectors are likely to be
involved in the trial. As well as monitoring driver behaviour, TfL said
it will look at how journey times and CO2 emissions are affected by
drivers who don't exceed the speed limit.
Chris Lines, head of TfL's London Road Safety Unit, said the technology is already
proven, but the aim of the trial is to learn how drivers in all types of
vehicles respond to the tech.
"ISA is intended as a
road safety device but if Londoners embrace this technology we may well
see additional benefits including reduced congestion as a result of
collisions and reduced vehicle emissions as drivers adopt a smoother
driving style," Lines added in a statement.
of the trial will be published in Spring 2010 and the tech will then be
made available to external organisations. It could also be commercially
available in 2010, according to TfL, which is urging GPS manufacturers
to take advantage of its digital speed limit map and incorporate speed
limit displays and warnings into their products.
added that Southwark Council has expressed an interest in using ISA.
Councillor Jeff Hook, executive member for environment at Southwark
Council, added in a statement: "This technology could revolutionise the
way we keep our roads safer in Southwark, and that's why we're really
interested in this trial. If it's successful, we hope to kit out our
entire fleet of nearly 300 vehicles as soon as funding allows."
two-thirds of London drivers use the ISA system, the number of road
casualties in the capital could be reduced by around a 10th, TfL added.