Next-Generation Traffic Incident Management (NextGen TIM) focuses on working with State, local, and Tribal partners to improve traffic incident management on all roadways. These entities are poised to take TIM to the next level by using innovative TIM approaches that will continue to improve safety and travel reliability and save lives, time, and money. Over the next four weeks, we will go into more detail about each of the four NextGen TIM focus areas; local TIM programs, training, data, and technology, starting with local TIM.
While TIM efforts have traditionally focused on high-speed roadways, TIM concepts are applicable to all roads. Most roadway incidents actually occur on local roads and are responded to by local agencies. NextGen TIM seeks to apply TIM at the local-level by encouraging communication, coordination, and cooperation through the application of low-cost solutions like establishing a TIM committee or task force, providing training, and developing multi-discipline policies. Once foundational TIM program elements are in place, NextGen TIM data and technology advancements can also be considered and applied at the local level.
Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) District Four’s Arterial Management Program (AMP) is an example of local level NextGen TIM. The program’s mission is to provide efficient active traffic management for incidents, special events, and planned construction on arterial roadways. The program strategies include signal retiming, traveler information dissemination, event management, and incident management. The need for the AMP was supported, in part, through the input received during bi-monthly TIM meetings, which FDOT has been facilitating in District 4 for over a decade.
To start, District Four, which includes five counties on the east coast of the State, took inventory of all available technologies, including advanced traffic management system combination controllers, signals that use signal preemption, and intelligent transportation system arterial device coverage. Next, they identified the arterial roadways within the county that had camera coverage and included them in the program. Lastly, the District implemented one severe incident response vehicle (SIRV) within a portion of the identified network.
The program’s performance measures include tracking the number of monitored incidents, managed incidents, signal timing changes, average incident duration, benefit to cost ratio, and net benefit value. Over the course of a 6-month evaluation period, the total monthly benefits are estimated at approximately $312,000. These benefits include travel time/delay savings, reduction in emissions, reduction in fuel consumption, and safety benefits.