Smart Traffic Lights Could Turn Green As You Arrive

Wed 23rd May 2018

New technology is being tested in the UK which could cut travel times significantly by allowing traffic lights to turn green when traffic arrives.

The innovative smart-tech will see the traffic lights communicate with a driver’s smartphone to ensure that the lights change as soon as they arrive at a junction.

With the aim of cutting congestion and reducing vehicle emissions, which are higher as a car sits idling, the new-style traffic lights can also advise drivers as to the correct speed to drive to the next set of lights in order to arrive when they too are green, ensuring there is no need to slow down.

The technology is being developed by US engineering firm AECOM, who are have built a simulation model of the A59 in York.

AECOM principal consultant Heather Hawkins said: "We are excited and are eager to get started so we can better understand the potential impact of vehicle-to-infrastructure technologies on our local road network in York.

"We are fortunate to be living and working in a city which has chosen to be an early innovator, deploying and testing these technologies on-street through existing research programmes. It's truly inspiring and we are grateful to be a part of it."

As well as saving the planet, the traffic-light tech could also prolong the life of the nation’s cars as stopping and starting the car puts increased demand on engines.

RAC spokesman Rod Dennis said: "It is great to see novel technology like this being trialled. Stop-start traffic causes drivers to use their brakes more, which causes wear, and accelerate more, which can increase vehicle emissions."