The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has issued a final rule requiring the states and U.S. territories to have real-time traffic monitoring programs operational by Nov. 8, 2016.
The rule says, under the “Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users” (SAFETEA-LU), the DOT is required to establish a “real-time system management information program” that provides the capability to monitor—in real-time—the traffic and travel conditions of the major highways of the United States and to share that data with state and local governments and with the travelling public.
The rule does not specify which type of monitoring technology to be used. According to the notices issued by the U.S. DOT, the rule establishes minimum parameters and requirements for states to make available and share traffic and travel conditions information via real-time information programs.
In addition, while the rule becomes effective Dec. 23, 2010, the establishment of the real-time information program for traffic and travel conditions reporting along Interstate system highways shall be completed by Nov. 8, 2014, while a real-time information program for traffic and travel conditions reporting along the state-designated metropolitan area routes of significance shall be completed by Nov. 8, 2016.
A system to monitor the traffic and travel conditions of the major highways of the United States and to share that information to improve the security of the surface transportation system is needed to address congestion problems; to support improved response to weather events and surface transportation incidents; and to facilitate national and regional highway traveller information, the notice says.
I think the rule is implemented to acknowledge the importance of real time information in solving traffic congestion and the importance of disseminating the information to travellers. Hope one day the importance of the real time traffic information is realised in other part of the world especially to those cities that are experiencing chronic traffic congestion during peak hours.
For further information, read States to Have Highway Monitoring Systems by 2016,
Hopefully, the congestion problem especially during major festive seasons will be the thing of the past. Also read HERE for traffic congestion during festive season.
The system will also help in preventing this type of unnecessary traffic jam.
The system can also alleviate traffic congestion during incident on Penang Bridge.
The system can also be used in other part of the world to reduce traffic congestion.