News and Resources

July 7, 2022

Defining the future of work zone safety: collaboration with the MDOT and GM

The future of work zones is connected, and many pieces of the road safety puzzle have the power to harness smart, connected technologies. Road safety equipment, connected vehicles, information feeds, departments of transportation – all can work together to make navigating our roads as safe as possible.

We’re proud to have collaborated with the MDOT and General Motors to see this come to life during a demonstration that took place in Oakland County, Michigan.

 

New Worker Presence Technology

During the demonstration, real-time field data was collected by existing Ver-Mac units, as well as a new worker presence technology prototype. While still in its testing phase, worker presence technology is a natural next step in making roads safer for road crews and motorists.

The information was then published directly to a connected GM vehicle, informing the driver of road conditions and the presence of workers.



See the demonstration video below!


Youtube


More on Ver-Mac’s involvement in the Connected Work Zone demonstration

All the real-time field data was collected by Ver-Mac units:

  • Smart Arrow Board to indicate lane closure
  • Work Zone Location Marker to show work zone boundaries
  • Speed Wizard to show speed feedback and the reduced work zone speed limit


Our worker presence technology prototype provided the data to indicate the presence of road crew members on the road, and alert drivers of the reduced speed limit. This technology will help relevant parties know that a work zone is active, and can be used to better map, route, navigate and alert motorists.

 

How real-time data is communicated to the connected vehicle

How does the information flow from the equipment to the car? The equipment’s data is pushed to the Work Zone Data Exchange (WZDx) and read by the MDOT’s work zone management system (Mixon Hill) which combines Ver-Mac’s data with planning information. The data is published as an enriched GM data feed. The GM vehicle reads that feed and reacts to it live on the road.

The future of road safety

Road safety concerns us all, and the numbers are staggering. In 2020 in the U.-S., there were 102,000 estimated work zone crashes, 44,000 work zone injuries, and 857 total work zone fatalities, according to the data available on workzonesafety.org.

Through our equipment and software, we are proud to play a crucial part in making roads safer, and to be a part of the bigger picture with partners acting for road safety. This collaboration with the MDOT and GM shows how we all work together and leverage technology to increase driver awareness, and ultimately have safer roads for motorists and construction crews.

The future of road safety is connected, and its possibilities keep on developing as we stretch into the future. Ver-Mac will keep being at the forefront to make the most of it for safer roads.

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