12 Dec Mesa Audi Drivers to Get Light Countdown
In an effort to help drivers, Audi is releasing select vehicles with a “time-to-green” feature that will tell drivers in Mesa, Arizona how long they must wait for a light to turn green. This feature is said to improve Mesa drivers’ safety on the road and increase traffic flow without the need to add more lanes.
Since the remaining time before the street light turns green is projected inside the car, the driver will be notified even before he reaches the stop light. This is made possible by allowing the car to communicate with the city’s smart traffic management system.
According to the Chief Marketing Officer for Traffic Technology Services Kiel Ova, this is not the first time that private companies have sought to use this kind of technology. For years, the government and private companies have been conducting research about the “time-to-green” technology. However, it’s only Audi who was able to bring it to fruition.
Time-to-green isn’t just a show-off feature. By coordinating with the city’s system, the waiting time on the traffic light can be adjusted based on the traffic flow in adjacent streets. All the information will then be sent to the AZ511 website which live feeds travel information to all the drivers in Arizona.
Using the sensors inside the traffic lights and the Wi-Fi connection inside the vehicle, data can be transferred between motorists and city authorities quickly and effectively
Audi, together with many more companies, had sought access to the Mesa’s traffic management system. Back in 2016, Audi and the Traffic Technology Services launched the feature in Las Vegas. It later expanded to Phoenix just this year.
As one of the very first vehicle companies to bring this feature to the public, Audi sees this as promoting both convenience and safety.
According to Ova, awareness and comfort is what the time-to-green feature brings. Since the driver will know the remaining time of the stoppage, he or she will likely avoid crashes and other accidents.
Speaking of accidents, this new feature on several Audi cars can also detect when a pedestrian pushes the button to cross the street. That, again, is a matter of safety. It directly reduces road accidents and fatalities.
Another good thing about the time-to-green feature is it allows drivers to anticipate the remaining time on the stop light. With this, they can tweak the approaching speed to the intersection, thus saving fuel.
Aiding emergency crews
Aside from Audi’s new feature, Mesa’s medical and fire department are developing a GPS-based technology that will help emergency vehicles traverse intersections.
With this technology, the traffic lights will be cycled longer in favor of the emergency vehicle. This is a different technology than that of the current strobe light detection where the first-responder has to be in-line with the intersection’s sight to change the traffic signals.
Through this GPS technology, the signal change on the responder’s direction would be less unexpected. Once the emergency vehicle has passed through the intersection, all the traffic lights will be back in sync together with the other signals in the area’s proximity.