UCF Studying Ways To Keep Drivers Safe In Thick Fog
By University of Central Florida // March 25, 2015
will teach drivers how to react in fog conditions
ABOVE VIDEO: Footage from the massive car pileup on I-4 in 2008, caused by dense fog. The University of Central Florida is working on a new study that could help make driving in the fog a lot safer.
ORLANDO, FLORIDA — The University of Central Florida is working on a new study that could help make driving in the fog a lot safer.
The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) awarded UCF’s Mohamed Abdel-Aty a $2 million grant to collect real time driving data from sections of I-4 in Polk County, Interstate 75 near Gainesville and a two-lane road in Tallahassee to determine driving patterns when foggy conditions exist.
Then he and his team of students will use the traffic data as well as weather data to put drivers through a high-tech driving simulator at UCF.
The data will help the team understand how drivers react to fog conditions and the advisory messages given to them on electronic message boards displayed on roads.
Engineering professor Abdel-Aty is the director of UCF’s Transportation Safety and Operation Center for Advanced Transportation Systems Simulation.
He is leading the “Real Time Monitoring and Prediction of Reduced Visibility Events on Florida’s Highways” study, which began this month and concludes in two years.
It builds on previous research, which the FDOT also funded.
On average across Florida, there are nearly 6 million vehicle crashes each year, with 23 percent of them being related to weather, according to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data.
The UCF team has identified the unique characteristics or signature of the “fingerprint” of fog formation in Florida.
Now the team will use the data they are collecting and simulator results to predict the occurrence of fog and to create a system to deliver real-time information to drivers.
Data from the three Florida locations along with statewide data from highway accidents and airports will also be used in the study. The team will also look at what other countries are doing about related roadway conditions.