ITS is a package of communication technologies to significantly reduce highway crashes and make travel more efficient in all modes.

Intelligent Transportation Systems Panel Getting to Work

A Feb. 24 Web conference is the start for members to advise DOT on the next five years of work on communication technologies to significantly reduce highway crashes and make travel more efficient in all modes.

A one-hour Web conference has been scheduled for Feb. 24 to allow the newly appointed members of DOT's Intelligent Transportation Systems Program Advisory Committee (ITSPAC) to begin their work. Rechartered on Feb. 7, 2010, the committee advises the department's secretary on the development and implementation of intelligent transportation systems, a catch-all term referring to wireless and wired technologies to make highway travel safer.

DOT already has a five-year ITS strategic plan in place for 2010-2014. Committee members were announced Feb. 1; they include transit and highways experts from around the country, including J. Peter Kissinger, president and CEO of the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety; Dr. Peter Sweatman, director of the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute; and James Vondale, director of the Automotive Safety Office, Sustainability, Environment, and Safety Engineering, for Ford Motor Company.

As DOT envisions ITS, it will significantly reduce highway crashes, will enable vehicles of all types to communicate with traffic signals to eliminate unnecessary stops and help people drive in the most fuel efficient manner, will provide accurate travel time information for all modes of travel and the potential environmental impacts of route choices, and will give transportation managers the data to measure multi-modal transportation system performance accurately.

The ITS Program is overseen by DOT's Research and Innovative Technology Administration. Major ITS initiatives include Next Generation 9-1-1, Cooperative Intersection Collision Avoidance Systems, and Integrated Vehicle Based Safety Systems. ITS deployment statistics are available here. To follow its progress via Twitter, click here.

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