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UK guide to connected vehicles for local authorities

13 March 2017

The Transport Technology Forum, a voluntary body indirectly funded by the UK government, has produced a guide to connected vehicles for local authorities. The guide was produced in order to (i) address the widespread lack of understanding of connected vehicles among local authorities, which was highlighted in a recent survey, and (ii) guide local authorities on what they can do in order to harness the benefits of connected vehicles.

The guide takes an expansive approach to the definition of connected vehicles, in that it covers all digital technologies capable of either transmitting data to or from the vehicle, including satnavs, DAB, Smartphone apps, fleet management systems, infotainment, which are widely used today, as well as technologies of tomorrow such as V2X and V2V communication. The document is broken down into sections looking at: the potential benefits and costs; a technology review and what they mean for local authorities; how local authorities can get involved; and finally, a list of actions that should be taken and by whom.

A key message from the guide is that connected vehicles are already there today and local authorities can already take advantage of this at little cost and risk. For what concerns tomorrow’s technologies, such as V2X, more “technical and customer tests are needed to determine the right solutions for local authorities and for customers”.

The UK’s Department for Transport is financially supporting 18 UK local authorities to test different aspects of connected vehicles, including:

  • Real-time information on parking bay availability to improve parking services in Reading
  • Real-time information for HGV drivers to avoid unnecessary stops at traffic signals via hands-free smartphones in Birmingham
  • Connected vehicle data for traffic signalling to improve congestion in York
  • Equipping more buses with vehicle-infrastructure technology in Newcastle

Click here to download the guide.