Solution monitors build-up of traffic at the junction and informs the traffic signals
An initiative integrating wireless vehicle detection traffic signals, vehicle activated signs (VAS) and a “hurry call” system has, reportedly, assisted to reconfigure a hospital junction to address safety concerns and assist ambulance response times.
Charged with improving safety for the 11,400 motorists which use the junction daily, Clearview Intelligence announced it has worked in partnership with road operator Amey and Transport Scotland to install a combination of road safety solutions on the A6091 at the junction with the Borders General Hospital to control the flow of traffic without jeopardising response times for ambulances, it claims.
The challenge was to address road safety concerns by controlling the flow of traffic but without impeding the egress for ambulances on an emergency call out, said Chris Keenan, general manager for Scotland at Clearview Intelligence.
“By using vehicle detection, this monitors the build-up of traffic at the junction and informs the traffic signals to provide efficient sequencing to allow enough time for queues to pass.”
The installation of the traffic signals reconfigured the junction so that for the first time, traffic could turn right when exiting the hospital. Previously this was a left-turn-only junction which created risks when ambulances were forced to turn right when responding to emergency calls.
The solution centred around the installation of Clearview’s M100 wireless vehicle detection solution, which offers the same functionality as a traditional inductive loop. However, as the sensor is a stud fitted in the centre of the lane, it reportedly, is faster to install than a loop as it does not require ducting or trenching; instead only a single hole needs to be cored and a power source is not needed.
“We have achieved the overall objective of improving road safety without having to enforce any road closures”
“The inclusion of a hurry call button was installed to allow ambulance or hospital staff to override the traffic light sequencing to maintain a green light in favour of the emergency response vehicles. This information is then shared with other road users via the VAS which warns of an ambulance responding to a call out,” added Keenan.
Using a magnetometer, the M100 detects vehicles waiting at the junction and wirelessly transmitted the information to an M110 access point, which is a two-way communications point mounted to the traffic signal. The access point then relayed the sensor detection data to the traffic signal controller to manage the light sequence.
“The most obvious solution which came to mind with this scenario – and the one most favoured by locals – was to introduce a roundabout¸” added Jim Reid, road safety manager for the Scottish trunk road south east, Amey.
“However due to limitations within the size of the area and other buildability constraints, this was not possible but if it had been, it would have involved lengthy delays and disruption to the busiest junction in the Scottish Borders. By sourcing an alternative which combined various technical solutions, we have achieved the overall objective of improving road safety without having to enforce any road closures.”
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