Improvement in quality and quantity of weather-related roadway information could reduce fatalities and injuries in weather-related crashes. Weather information is generally collected by road weather information stations (RWIS), which use collect weather data at specific points and send this data back to a traffic management center (TMC). This information is useful for providing warnings, but insufficient in areas with isolated weather events, such as Wyoming, as RWISs are typically placed at several-mile intervals. Gathering road weather information from vehicle computers in a connected vehicle environment could provide drivers with more accurate and useful road weather information. Travelers could then better prepare for current and predicted roadway conditions and behave differently or make alternative decisions relating to taking their trip or determining their trip route.
The report details one strategy attempted by researchers at the University of Wyoming to capture and analyze vehicle CAN-Bus data to extrapolate road conditions and determine the value of this information as inputs into VSL algorithms. The goals of this research are to determine feasibility of collecting and analyzing connected vehicle data to evaluate road weather conditions and to assist the creation of a real-time connected vehicle road weather condition reporting system that increases reliability of VSLs, efficiency of winter road maintenance, and safety.
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