Enlisting technology to aid traffic flow

Jan 11, 2019

The new year has begun and with it are the seemingly continuing concerns relative to vehicular traffic congestion in the City of Baguio.

This 2019 we hope that the Baguio City Police Office (BCPO) particularly its Traffic Management Division (TMD) can formulate new ways and means to manage and regulate the heavy flow of traffic particularly along the Central Business District Area.

A question that has long been festering in the mind of this writer is whether the BCPO-TMD has successfully utilized to its maximum capability the existing Close Circuit Television Cameras (CCTV) network strung out along the major thoroughfares of the city, and whether at this year’s end an honest to goodness assessment and evaluation has been done to determine whether these so called ever vigilant monitors are performing as they should be.

This is important in order to find out whether these CCTVs are indeed assisting our traffic enforcers and policemen as they conduct traffic regulation.
It is also suggested that perhaps the BCPO also look into the possibility of acquiring agile and multi-camera drones that can further help in constantly monitoring the traffic flow of vehicles while they traverse and/or park along the busy streets of the city. It is certainly not enough to just enforce traffic laws and apprehend those in violation thereof since those hard-headed motorists will always find a way to impose their will in the road.

Another suggestion is using the drones to capture traffic incidents in real-time and instantly transmitting the same to the police headquarters for processing so that the vehicles involved in the mishap (unless the collision is severe or a death occurred as a result of the incident), could already be allowed to proceed along their routes without unnecessarily causing further traffic especially along major roads. It must be remembered that sometimes one of the causes of traffic has to do with motor vehicles obstructing the road lanes due to their involvement in some traffic accident. While the police can immediately respond to the incident there is still need for following procedures such as marking out the accident site, proper document of the whole incident and measuring distances to establish the positions of the involved vehicles relative to the mishap.

This obviously takes time.

Drones who are for the most part are operating in the air can immediately record and provide a better perspective of the incident and can then relay said information to the proper offices for the disposition of the case.

Another vital use of drones is the fact that late in the afternoon when vehicular traffic is sometimes at its heaviest, they can assist as an extra pair of eyes in monitoring the flow of not only vehicles but also people as they move to and fro at the CBD area.

In fact even in the apprehension of motorists for violation of traffic laws the drone, if such is operational and available at the area where the violation occurred, can immediately provide the arresting traffic officer with a blow-by-blow account of the violation and thus avoid prolonged discussions, debate and arguments with the violating motorist.

It’s time for the BCPO-TMD to use available technology to assist them in the regulation and control of traffic.

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