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Advanced traffic management systems (ATMS) are used to manage mobility, congestion and incident response in most major metropolitan areas in the United States. These systems include an extensive infrastructure of ITS applications, such as loop detectors and remotely operated cameras, which provide traffic management services and a Traffic Management Center (TMC) where traffic information is gathered, managed, and disseminated. Similarly, public safety and law enforcement operations are managed in a dispatch center, where calls for assistance are received and officers are dispatched to respond to those calls. Dispatch operations are managed by Computer-Aided Dispatch (CAD) systems that track information about incidents that public safety or law enforcement respond to and manage.

These two separate systems often overlap when responding to traffic incidents; however, they are seldom integrated with one another. To investigate the benefits of integrating CAD and TMC systems, the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) Intelligent Transportation Systems Joint Program Office (ITS JPO) funded the CAD-TMC Field Operational Test (FOT) in Washington State. This FOT is one of the many initiatives implemented by the ITS JPO to meet the ITS Public Safety Program goals:
  • Improving incident detection and notification.
  • Reducing emergency response times.
  • Improving information flows between emergency response agencies (real-time wireless communications links, integration of systems).
The objective of the FOT was to demonstrate how the integration of CAD and TMC systems can improve information flows between emergency response agencies, and in turn, improve incident response capabilities.
Ted Smith
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Prepared by SAIC for the USDOT
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Computer-Aided Dispatch — Traffic Management Center Field Operational Test Final Report: Washington State
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