Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) traffic engineer Sue Groth was recognized by the White House as a transportation Champion of Change for 2013 in May thanks to the department’s work on intersection conflict warning systems (ICWS) across the state. MnDOT is now working to help other states implement the technology.
ICWS provide drivers with real-time alerts about cross-traffic at an intersection. MnDOT has largely installed them on rural roads, where lower traffic volumes make traditional traffic-control devices or geometric improvements less practical.
At present, ICWS have been deployed at 14 intersections across Minnesota. Three of the sites also include technology developed in partnership with the University of Minnesota’s Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) Institute, part of the Center for Transportation Studies (CTS). The system—called Cooperative Intersection Collision Avoidance System-Stop Sign Assist (CICAS-SSA)—alerts drivers on secondary rural roads when gaps in traffic are too small to safely cross or turn.
To expand testing and implementation of the technology, MnDOT also introduced a three-year plan to install at least one of the two systems at 20-50 new intersections across the state. The department will conduct testing at the first location, in Carver County, before moving on to the other sites.