Traffic Detector Handbook

Managing traffic requires being able to detect a variety of vehicles characteristics in different circumstances, for different purposes: traffic flows, volumes, speeds and vehicle types for planning and design; detecting incidents for emergency response; flows on ramps for metering; vehicle volumes approaching intersections for signal timing and control; and traffic conditions for traveller information are some examples.

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I-95 Corridor Coalition TMC Simulation

The I-95 Corridor Coalition is an alliance of transportation agencies, toll authorities, and related organizations, from the State of Maine in the northeast right down the US to the State of Florida in the south.

The I-95 Corridor Coalition offers several web-based courses. In the TMC Simulation Program, you act as a TMC operator.

Due to the variety of technologies used in different Traffic Management Centers, there are two different simulation areas. The operator in the High-Tech TMC uses a Traffic Monitoring System to manage resources like a computer automated dispatch System, CCTV, pager system, dynamic or variable message signs, pavement weather sensors, traffic detectors, etc.

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Freeway Service Patrol returns high benefit

A research study found that a Virginia DOT Freeway Service Patrol (FSP) provides a 4.7 to 1 benefit-cost ratio.

The Hampton Roads FSP, which consists of 48 vehicles and operates 24/7 on 80 miles of interstate highway, responded to 40,700 incidents during the 12-month period evaluated.

The patrols aim to reduce congestion, improve safety and customer service. Other benefits include reduced secondary incidents, increasing safety and saving additional delays.

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Virtual Incident Management Training

The University of Maryland’s Center for Advanced Transportation Technology Laboratory (CATT Lab) is working with the I-95 Corridor Coalition to create virtual incident management training software program.

An intensive training program is being developed that will use three-dimensional, multi-player computer gaming simulation technology and distance-based learning technologies to test, validate, certify, and reinforce the dissemination of best incident management practices.

The program will present typical incident situations and allow the participants to play out their normal roles in what is essentially a highly structured and recorded video game.

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Benchmarking Traffic Incident Management in Australia

To identify potential innovative practices that may be suitable for wider application, as well as provide a benchmark for ongoing improvement, a review of current traffic incident management (TIM) practices in major urban regions across Australia was undertaken in 2005-6. The review covered current traffic incident management practices in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth.

The assessment, modelled on the self-assessment approach taken by the US Federal Highways Administration approach, covered program and institutional issues (strategy and programs, resourcing, performance measurement, institutional arrangements), operational issues (procedures for major incidents, responder and motorist safety, response and clearance policies and procedures) and communication and technology issues (integrated inter-agency communications, transport management systems & traveller information).

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Traffic Incident Response Practices in Europe

The U.S. Federal Highway Administration released a report that includes recommendations to improve traffic incident response in the United States.

The recommendations are based on an April 2005 scanning tour on traffic incident response practices, procedures, and technologies of England, Germany, the Netherlands, and Sweden that assessed and evaluated various practices for responding to traffic incidents.

The recommendations are organised under the three primary themes of programs and institutions, tactical and on-scene management, and communications and technology.

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Best Practices for Traffic Incident Management in Florida

Florida Department of Transportation released a report in 2005 that examines traffic incident management programs, procedures, and techniques from throughout the US and within Florida; summarises lessons learned and best practices; identifies suitable performance measures for incident management programs; and recommends overall program improvements for application in Florida. The report documents the best practices currently … Read more

Quick Clearance Toolkit Website

The I-95 Corridor Coalition has developed a Quick Clearance Toolkit website that includes links to material and videos designed to help jurisdictions initiate or improve quick clearance programs. The material includes a roadmap for developing a traffic incident management program designed to help provide policy makers and practitioners in traffic incident management with ready-to-use tools … Read more

Tabletop Exercise Instructions for Planned Events and Emergencies

The US Federal Highway Administration has released a guide designed to help in conducting tabletop exercises to test the effectiveness of transportation management plans associated with planned special events. The guide may also be helpful in the management of unplanned incidents including traffic incidents and responses to emergencies.

When planned special events are held, they generally increase traffic demands in or near the location of the event. In order to address this influx of traffic, transportation management plans are developed with the intent of minimising the effect the event has on the transportation system.

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Traffic Incident Management: Best Practice

The Austroads Improving Traffic Incident Management project involves a review of traffic incident management in major urban regions across Australia and New Zealand. The fifth and final report released in July 2007 provides a brief overview of all aspects of traffic incident management, including planning, institutional issues, evaluation and performance review and capability development, as … Read more