Dublin to host conference on intelligent transport systems

Sat, Jan 28, 2012, 00:00

DUBLIN HAS been chosen as the venue for a major conference that is expected to attract thousands of delegates working in technology-based road safety systems.

The 2013 Intelligent Transport Systems conference is a key event for the designers of systems such as the eCall device which rings emergency services in the event of a crash. The system also provides potentially life-saving information on the speed of the vehicle at the time of the crash and current position.

Other intelligent transport systems under development or already available include in-car breathalysers that prevent a vehicle from starting if the driver is “over the limit”.

The conference, to be held in the Convention Centre, Dublin, in June is expected to attract several thousand delegates from across Europe, and the selection of Dublin is likely to be a major boost for the city, according to Minister of State for Transport Alan Kelly.

Speaking yesterday, Mr Kelly said he believed developing such technologies offered a major opportunity for Ireland – both in terms of the businesses developing the technologies themselves and their application .

“There is an app already developed for smartphones which will request a taxi and give your location,” he said. Further technological development could provide “space-sharing” on lorries across the island, which would offer savings in costs and carbon emissions.

The National Roads Authority is currently rolling out variable messaging signs along motorways which advise drivers of travel times, weather conditions or likely diversions ahead.

The authority is also expanding its range of information-gathering technologies on temperature and the conditions of roads.

According to Mr Kelly, intelligent transport technologies also have implications for public transport with text or app-based requests for rural public transport services.

“Smartcard ticketing and real-time passenger information systems facilitate a modal shift to public transport.”

Mr Kelly also told The Irish Timeshe would like to see the identification of an Irish town or village as a test-bed for the roll out of electric vehicles and such technologies.