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National Traffic Control Centre to use automatic number plate recognition to warn drivers on the M25 of traffic delays.
Traffic delays and other travel information are set to be displayed in real-time on electronic roadsides signs down the M25 around London.
Following a trial in the West Midlands and South West, 89 per cent of surveyed drivers said the real-time messages were a good idea. The area covered by the message service now includes the M25, as well the M6 and parts of the M5.
The National Traffic Control Centre system uses automatic number plate recognition cameras, taking a snapshot and comparing it to previous data for that part of the motorway, updating the signs to new travel times every five minutes. The signs can also be used to show safety messages or other warnings.
"We are making best use of our technology to help drivers find out about traffic conditions on their route both before they leave and during their journey," said roads minister Tom Harris in a statement. "Displaying journey times on our electronic signs gives drivers greater certainty about the time it will take to get them to their destinations. It also helps them to consider options such as changing their route or taking a break if there are traffic delays on the road ahead."
Agency is also set to launch its own digital traffic radio station
as well as making CCTV pictures of major roads available to the public
and media by spring of 2008.
Ramp metering to go liveBY LEON ENGELBRECHT , ITWEB SENIOR WRITER
READ IN THIS STORY:
[ Johannesburg, 26 September 2007 ] - Ramp metering has arrived for motorists using the N1 highway between Johannesburg and Pretoria. It forms part of the SA National Road Agency Limited's (Sanral's) ongoing efforts to use IT to keep traffic flowing on Africa's busiest road.
A ramp meter is a smart traffic light on the onramp to a highway that, by alternating between red and green every few seconds, breaks up the flow of traffic onto the freeway. The meter is supervised real-time by closed-circuit television (CCTV) and via an intelligent traffic (i-traffic) management system.
The year-long pilot project will see ramp meters on the southbound onramps of the N1, at Samrand and New Roads, as well as at the N1-Old Johannesburg Road intersection. There is another on the northbound onramp to the N1, at New Road, in Midrand, to be joined shortly by a ramp meter at Samrand Road.
Van Niekerk says acceleration lines will be painted onto the road to further aid traffic flow. “The expectation is that these two measures should improve traffic flow on the freeway.”
He adds that the ramp meters and their effectiveness will be constantly monitored, especially their impact on the roads surrounding the onramps. The frequency of the lights – the length of time they flash red or green – can be adjusted remotely and, should traffic on the ramps back up substantially, the lights can be set to green.
Other i-traffic measures already in place include CCTV along most of Gauteng's highways, as well as electronic variable messaging boards. The CCTVs are linked by fibre optic cables to a central control room, in Midrand.
At its launch last year, the project was valued at about R100 million. At the time, transport minister Jeff Radebe said the ever-increasing traffic congestion on the province's roads was impeding economic growth.
No escaping Gauteng tolls
Smart highways for 2010
IT will take toll
Transport department in IT push
Police contact centre on track
Technology takes control of traffic
Jo'burg's answer to traffic blues
South Africa faces a R17-billion shortfall in its efforts to repair its national road network over the next five years, the transport minister said on Monday.
Replying in writing to a question in parliament, Jeff Radebe said a total of R30,2-billion would be spent on roadworks in that period, leaving a backlog in infrastructure projects.
South Africa hopes to improve its infrastructure before hosting the
2010 soccer World Cup.
DATED: 3rd September 2007