Widespread Launch for Pilot Project to Share Information on Traffic Disruptions and Conditions

Would you benefit from up-to-date notifications of traffic disruptions on your winter holiday trip or in your daily life? The Finnish Transport and Communications Agency Traficom has launched a project whose aim is to provide road users with more comprehensive and up-to-date information on road traffic disruptions and other conditions. Road users can join the pilot project through applications offered by corporate partner groupings led by Posti oy, Infotripla oy and EEE Innovations oy.

“The purpose of the pilot is to make everyday life easier for road users, improve safety and ensure a smooth flow of traffic by making more extensive use of road traffic data. We are developing and testing new approaches to facilitating collaboration between data providers and brokers with the aim of providing end-users with higher-quality traffic information. We welcome everyone to take part in the pilot”, says Project Manager Michaela Sannholm from Traficom.

The most comprehensive information is available to users of Main Road E18 between Helsinki and Turku and the Capital Region’s arterial roads, but the services also work well elsewhere in the country. The pilot is set to continue until the end of May 2020 and will be followed by an analysis of feedback received on the service.

New cooperative transport services to make daily life easier

Thanks to modern technology, road users and transport service providers can share up-to-date information on traffic conditions by linking cars or devices such as mobile phones to each other via wireless connections. These new information services are known as Cooperative Intelligent Transport Systems (C-ITS) services. Cars and mobile devices can also be connected to traffic lights, road signs or traffic management centres.

C-ITS services automatically alert end users to dangerous situations or conditions — such as obstacles on the road or slippery road surfaces — or disseminate information designed to improve the flow of traffic and otherwise assist road users, such as information on the appropriate speed when approaching traffic lights or nearby on-street parking places.

The ongoing pilot aims to develop several such C-ITS services. A number of technologies designed to collect and share data on road traffic conditions both automatically and manually are being deployed in the context of the pilot. These include analysing video footage of roads captured by vehicles and detecting potholes using tyre movement data collected by vehicles’ own sensors. The pilot also features various mobile applications which allow their users to share information on traffic conditions. The project’s innovative approach means that it must take into account a large number of factors. These include ensuring the services’ acceptability, understandability and technical operability as well as the accuracy of the disseminated information, establishing collaborative practices among participating actors, and guaranteeing an adequate level of data protection and security.

“All participating companies have committed to ensuring that the services they offer comply with the existing data protection legislation. Each participating application includes a statement explaining how it implements the necessary data protection measures. This information is communicated to the user during the downloading process”, Sannholm explains.

The project has entailed a wide-ranging examination of data protection in the context of C-ITS services, providing a forum for discussion on the European and Nordic levels.

Wide-ranging cooperation in data collection and sharing

The grouping formed by Posti, Vaisala oyj and Metsäteho oy is focusing on collecting data on traffic conditions and disruptions from the daily routes of their vehicles, to be shared with other users of the road network.

“In light of our social role, we see generating and collecting data as part of our daily delivery operations as a valuable contribution to building an intelligent road traffic ecosystem, which will, given the variable conditions of Finnish roads, benefit all road users”, says Tommi Pekkala, Business Manager at Posti’s Data Services.

Infotripla's grouping is developing and researching both technology and business opportunities.

“Our group’s solutions are mainly based on combining existing technologies and modifying them to meet the needs of future business activities”, explains Infotripla Development Director Juha Laakso. Infotripla's grouping also features Arctic Machine oy, Ficonic Solutions oy, The Finnish Meteorological Institute, RoadCloud oy and Sitowise oy.

EEE Innovations Oy’s grouping is a novel combination of innovation and deep expertise, bringing together TraffICT oy, Driveco oy, Tietoevry oyj, Sensible4 oy, Swarco Finland oy, WhereOS and Defensec oy.

“Our grouping is developing new services designed to improve safety and comfort in both professional and private transport”, says EEE Innovations CEO Jarmo Leino.

The pilot will also entail working with the Traffic Management Finland Group (TMFG) to share the generated information in its Digitraffic (External link) and Traffic Situation (Liikennetilanne) services (android (External link) (External link)/ iOS (External link)).

Part of a joint Nordic research project

The Finnish pilot is part of NordicWay2, a collaborative project (2017-2020) between partners in Finland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark, co-financed by the EU's Connecting Europe Facility. The project aims to develop and explore solutions related to sharing information on road transport disturbances and conditions as well as automation in the road transport sector. The project is also part of EU Member States’ C Roads initiative, which seeks to facilitate the cross-border use of road traffic information services

Join us in helping road users by generating and receiving traffic information

To gain access to the information on traffic disruptions produced during the pilot, download one of the following applications: Aindata Nopra (External link), Carrio (External link), ForeC (External link) or Louhi (External link). While each application has some unique features, the notifications of traffic disruptions generated during the pilot are available through all of them. Choose the application that best suits your needs. By using the listed applications, you can also participate in generating certain types of disruption notifications.

“Our hope is that as many people as possible join us in helping share information on traffic disruptions and conditions, as this would no doubt benefit all road users”, says Sannholm. 

Enquiries

Traficom: Michaela Sannholm, tel. +358 40 829 9936, michaela.sannholm(at)traficom.fi

EEE Innovations: Jarmo Leino, tel. +358 400 280 850, jarmo.leino(at)e3inno.fi

Infotripla: Juha Laakso, tel. +358 40 738 8908, firstname.lastname(at)infotripla.fi

Posti: Tommi Pekkala, tel. +358 40 747 4233, tommi.pekkala(at)posti.fi