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Ford: helping manufacturers to make roads safer

Ford announces landmark road safety data sharing agreement to help manufacturers make roads safer

|Jan 25|magazine6 min read

In a landmark road safety data sharing agreement, Ford has committed to helping drivers of connected vehicles across multiple brands with advance warning capabilities for potential dangerous driving conditions on the roads

“Connected vehicles help drivers to anticipate hazards that may be lurking just around the next bend. Road-safety data sharing ecosystems are more effective the more vehicles and telematics sources they include; extending the benefits of this technology to those who do not drive Ford cars represents a significant step forwards,” commented Peter Geffers, manager, Connected Vehicles, Ford of Europe.

Ford’s Local Hazard Information system

Introduced in early 2020 in the company’s new Ford Puma, the automotive manufacturer’s Local Hazard Information system is currently being enabled on newly built Fords and can warn drivers of road safety dangers that could be round the corner.  

The agreement

The new agreement - Led by the European Commission-backed Data for Road Safety partnership - will enable vehicles from other manufacturers to identify and share information about hazards encountered to improve road safety by preparing drivers for dangers ahead.

This new agreement follows a 16 month proof of concept where tens of millions of safety related traffic information (SRTI) messages were exchanged between different vehicles.

Partners of the data-sharing ecosystem include BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Volvo so far, and is open to new participants. 

How it works

Data from vehicles - such as fog lights, emergency braking or airbag activation - is anonymised and computed onboard to determine the presence and location of potential hazards.

Warning messages are sent to a secure Ford server where the data is distributed to SRTI partners to share with their vehicle brands. Relevant SRTI messages are immediately sent to vehicles in the vicinity of the potential hazard appearing on their dashboard display. 

The data can also be used to alert emergency services and provide accurate location data in near real time to help accelerate assistance.

“The Data for Road Safety ecosystem is a public-private partnership that delivers enriched data to improve road safety in a very tangible way, so it is a win-win situation for society as a whole. The vehicle manufacturers participating in the project are willing to share data on a daily basis, and will continue their endeavours to contribute to the SRTI data ecosystem, together with all partners,” concluded Joost Vantomme, chairman of the new SRTI ecosystem. 

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