Connected vehicles being tested on Tampa roads

connected-car

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Connected vehicles could soon be a thing on Bay area roads. Siemens engineering company is using Tampa as a test city.

Infrastructure is already in place to link vehicles with the roads we use each day.

“Siemens is working with the Tampa-Hillsborough Expressway Authority to realize the first large-scale connected vehicle project in the United States,” said Siemens executive Marcus Welz.

Company leaders are in Tampa this week giving the new system a whirl.

A News Channel 8 crew went along for a test drive.

As the car drove around town, the software determined if traffic signals ahead were red or green. That information helped the driver slow down or speed up as he approached.

“It also allows to give some harmonized speed recommendation in order to have the traffic flowing in a smooth fashion throughout the city with minimized stop,” Welz said.

The software will likely be built into future vehicles or drivers can put it in their existing cars.

It’ll also have the capability of warning drivers about pedestrians and bicyclists making roads safer for everyone.

“It’s a technology where the U.S. Department of Transportation says it can prevent 80% of unimpaired vehicle accidents,” Welz said.

Tampa-Hillsborough Expressway Authority leaders like the idea of using the technology instead of constantly re-building or re-developing highways and roads.

“You’re going to see more of the intelligent transportation systems used, especially in cities and areas where we don’t want to widen roads,” said Bob Frey of the Expressway Authority.

In 18 months, 40 intersections in Tampa should be equipped with the technology.

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