The USA’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has awarded a US$773,504 grant to the Louisiana State University (LSU) to study the causes of commercial motor vehicle (CMV) crashes to improve safety on the state’s roadways.
The new research program will be carried out by the LSU’s Center for Analytics and Research in Transportation Safety (CARTS) and will be led by Helmut Schneider, as the principal investigator, and he will be working in collaboration with co-investigator Supratik Mukhopadhyay, from the LSU’s School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. CARTS is responsible for collecting, maintaining, integrating, analyzing and distributing crash-related data captured from law enforcement and other agencies throughout the state of Louisiana.
The Center uses this data to develop business intelligence (BI) and GIS tools, perform research studies and produce an annual factbook. These tools and publications are used by the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (LaDOTD) and decision-makers across the state to identify potential problem areas, create countermeasures, set policies, and establish programs to improve the safety of the state’s roadways.
The CARTS researchers propose to locate areas of CMV/passenger vehicle conflict and enhance crash analysis through artificial intelligence-driven (AI) advanced video analytics on data captured from multiple traffic camera videos. Streaming video from multiple cameras will be analyzed in real-time simultaneously to capture CMV count, traffic crashes, vehicle breakdowns, congestion, and vehicle speed, and to detect lane violations, following too close, hard braking, aimless driving, and other unsafe driver behavior.
The CARTS team expects that application of this innovative technology will enrich crash data information leading to improved analytics and provide insights into car-truck interactions on interstate highways that lead to crashes involving commercial vehicles. Providing this information to the Louisiana State Police will guide more effective deployment of enforcement resources and lead to reduced crashes, injuries and fatalities involving commercial motor vehicles. The LaDOTD will be able to study the results of the research to guide any future investments and projects centered on roadway improvements.
Schneider said, “This new grant is one of the biggest awards that LSU has received from the FMCSA, and it helps to establish CARTS as one of the premier research centers in highways safety analytics.”