​Waze-fed AI platform helps Las Vegas cut car crashes by almost 20%

Predictive analytics allow Las Vegas traffic authorities to take preventative action that reduces the risk of collisions.
Written by Liam Tung, Contributing Writer

An AI-led, road-safety pilot program between analytics firm Waycare and Nevada transportation agencies has helped reduce crashes along the busy I-15 in Las Vegas.

The Silicon Valley Waycare system uses data from connected cars, road cameras and apps like Waze to build an overview of a city's roads and then shares that data with local authorities to improve road safety.

Waycare struck a deal with Google-owned Waze earlier this year to "enable cities to communicate back with drivers and warn of dangerous roads, hazards, and incidents ahead". Waze's crowdsourced data also feeds into Waycare's traffic management system, offering more data for cities to manage traffic.

Waycare has now wrapped up a year-long pilot with the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada (RTC), Nevada Highway Patrol (NHP), and the Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT).

SEE: Tech and the future of transportation (ZDNet special report) | Download the report as a PDF (TechRepublic)

RTC reports that Waycare helped the city reduce the number of primary crashes by 17 percent along the Interstate 15 Las Vegas.

Waycare's data, as well as its predictive analytics, gave the city's safety and traffic management agencies the ability to take preventative measures in high risk areas.

RTC claims that in areas where preventative measures were deployed 91 percent of drivers reduced their speed to below 65 MPH.

Waycare has been providing traffic agencies with alerts detailing when and where it predicts an accident is likely to take place. RTC then uses a message board system to deliver alerts to drivers, advising them to reduce their speed and drive with extra caution.

NHP also positions its vehicles in visible locations on the highway while NDOT ensures safety barriers are in place for police officers.

"These latest statistics coupled with the fact that we are identifying accidents up to 12 minutes faster with the Waycare platform helps translate what public and private partnerships can do and that AI is working to modernize and create a better transportation system for all," said Tina Quigley, RTC general manager.

The Nevada Highway Patrol was also impressed with having predictive data to help them get ahead of potential accidents.

"Traditionally, law enforcement has relied on anecdotal evidence to determine where to deploy resources to respond to traffic-related issues," said Lieutenant Colonel Daniel Solow of Nevada Highway Patrol.

"Now, with the technology that Waycare has brought to Southern Nevada, the Highway Patrol can proactively deploy units into an area when the system identifies a high likelihood of something happening and prevent crashes before they even happen.

"This translates into significantly faster treatment for those injured in crashes, quicker clearance and restoration of normal traffic flow, and untold millions of dollars in commerce related delays that are prevented."


A view along the I-15 highway to Las Vegas.

Image: XavierMarchant/Getty Images/iStockphoto

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