Swerving Prevention Technology
Since 2015, our agency has been involved in studying connected vehicle (CV) technology through the THEA CV Pilot. Connected vehicles communicate with each other and with infrastructure technology to send safety alerts to vehicle drivers. For instance, a driver might get a safety warning to slow down due to danger ahead. The USDOT estimates that 80% of crashes can be eliminated by implementing CV technology into vehicles. All data collected in the THEA CV Pilot is shared to provide companies and government agencies the tools to implement and adopt safety technology into vehicles and infrastructure.
Right here in Tampa, the data and real-life testing conditions of the THEA CV Pilot have inspired researchers with the Center for Urban Transportation Research at the University of South Florida (CUTR) to patent a technology that identifies the presence of roadway debris, one of the main causes of crashes on roads.
With the patent, an algorithm is in place that detects precisely where unwanted objects in the road are causing the cars to swerve. Once the items are discovered, transportation departments in the area will be notified of the debris and any emergency that it may have caused. Utilization of this tool can help to eliminate roadway debris, saving time and money with a more systemic approach to clearing hazards.
The THEA CV Pilot is currently in the next phase of the pilot through a collaboration with Honda R&D Americas, LLC, Hyundai America Technical Center, Inc. (HATCI), and Toyota Motor North America. Working with these major Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) vehicles is the next step in enhancing driving safety. To learn more about the pilot, visit www.theacvpilot.com.