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‘No crashes, just speed’: Tech warns Ohio drivers of slowdowns.

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TLDR:

New technology is being implemented on Ohio highways to warn drivers of traffic slowdowns in an effort to prevent crashes. After a fatal chain-reaction crash occurred on Interstate 70, which resulted in the deaths of three students and three adults, the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) installed the first warning system on I-70 and state Route 310. The system uses advanced cameras to detect traffic slowdowns and activates warning messages two miles ahead of the congestion. The goal is to reduce rear-end crashes, which occurred around 8,811 times in Ohio last year.

Key Points:

  • New technology is being implemented on Ohio highways to warn drivers of traffic slowdowns and prevent crashes.
  • The system uses advanced cameras to detect slowing traffic and activates warning messages two miles ahead of the congestion.
  • The goal is to reduce rear-end crashes on highways, which occurred around 8,811 times in Ohio last year.
  • Distracted driving is a major concern in Ohio, and the state is cracking down on texting while driving.
  • The new technology is modeled after a system that detects wrong-way drivers on highways and is expected to reduce rear-end crashes and injuries by 16%.
  • The first installation of the new technology will occur in 13 locations across Ohio, including Cuyahoga County, Summit County, Licking County, Franklin County, Hamilton County, and Greene County.
  • ODOT was already working on implementing the technology, but the fatal school bus crash on I-70 accelerated their efforts.
  • Each installation site will cost between $300,000 and $600,000, which will come from state and federal funding allocated in ODOT’s budget.

The Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) is taking action to prevent crashes on its highways by implementing new technology that warns drivers of traffic slowdowns. This initiative comes after a tragic chain-reaction crash on Interstate 70 resulted in the deaths of three Tuscarawas Valley students and three adults. The first warning system has been installed on I-70 and state Route 310, close to where the crash occurred in November.

The new technology functions by using advanced cameras to detect when traffic is slowing down and backing up. Once detected, warning messages will be displayed two miles before the slowdown. The digital messages will read “Slow traffic ahead” and “Watch for stopped traffic.” The goal of this system is to reduce the occurrence of rear-end crashes, which happened approximately 8,811 times in Ohio last year.

Distracted driving is a major concern in Ohio, and the state has recently implemented new penalties for texting while driving in an effort to crack down on this dangerous behavior. Governor Mike DeWine stated that distracted driving is a significant reason why some drivers fail to slow down. However, both DeWine and ODOT officials believe that the new technology will also contribute to reducing crashes.

The technology being installed on Ohio highways is modeled after a system that detects wrong-way drivers on highways. ODOT Director Jack Marchbanks stated that this innovative approach has the potential to reduce rear-end crashes and injuries by 16%, which would result in more than 1,400 Ohioans being able to return home safely. The selected installation sites were determined based on data that identified them as the top locations for backups and crashes in the state.

Thirteen locations will be the first to receive the new technology, with the possibility of expanding to additional sites in the future. The installations are expected to take approximately two years. The selected locations include areas in Cuyahoga County, Summit County, Licking County, Franklin County, Hamilton County, and Greene County.

ODOT was already working on implementing this technology before the tragic school bus crash on I-70, but the incident expedited their efforts. Each installation site will cost between $300,000 and $600,000, and the funding will be sourced from the state and federal money allocated in ODOT’s budget.

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