Intelligent Speed Adaptation (ISA) technology, which ensures vehicles can’t exceed speed limits, is to be trialled on 47 London buses in what TfL says is a “UK-first”.
The new technology, which was outlined in London’s first Pedestrian Safety Action Plan last year, recognises speed limits on the route using TfL’s Digital Speed Limit Map of London, and ensures that the bus is not able to go any faster.
The trials will take place on route 19 (Battersea to Finsbury Park) and route 486 (North Greenwich to Bexleyheath) which include a variety of different road environments, with differing speed limits, to enable the technology to be fully tested.
TfL says this will enable it to “understand the effectiveness of ISA in promoting speed compliance across the road network and improving safety”. The trials, which run until autumn, will also seek to understand the attitudes of drivers and passengers to the technology. If successful, ISA could be introduced across London’s 8,700 bus fleet.
Isabel Dedring, London’s deputy mayor, said: “With nearly 9,000 buses on the Capital’s roads it’s clear they have a major role to play in continuing improvements in road safety.
“This trial is a great example of how we’re harnessing innovation and new technology that will aid bus drivers on the job and help to improve the safety of other road users.”
Leon Daniels, managing director of surface transport at TfL, said: “Intelligent Speed Adaptation improves road safety by reducing incidences of speeding for all road users, allowing drivers to focus on looking out for potential issues on the road rather than checking their speed limit.
“If this trial confirms that this technology could be beneficial to the safety of London’s roads, it could be introduced across our bus fleet.”
Jack Skillen, London director of Living Streets, said: “It’s critical that we make walking safer and easier as a way of improving people’s health and wellbeing.
“We are pleased to see measures like the Intelligent Speed Adaptation being implemented on London’s bus fleet and the introduction of more 20 mph limits to help reduce road danger and make our streets safer for pedestrians.”