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Improved Hazard warning reporting and clearance mechanism Disclosure Number: IPCOM000199488D
Publication Date: 2010-Sep-06
Document File: 4 page(s) / 208K

Publishing Venue

The Prior Art Database


Current GPS (Global Positioning System) based traffic hazard detection, reporting and broadcast systems are designed to receive hazard reports from vehicles sensing a hazard on their route. Vehicles send hazard reports whenever they encounter a hazard, The central system then determines if this is a new hazard or a previously reported one. In current systems, clearance of hazard warnings, are achieved by manual intervention at the central system, or at best by learning through non-reporting over a period of time, that hazards have disappeared. This disclosure will describe a software program, located at each sensor equiped vehicle, which utilizes data present at the vehicle, to eliminate duplicate reporting of known hazards, and to optimise the clearance of hazard warnings

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Improved Hazard warning reporting and clearance mechanism

A program is disclosed with an improved method of reporting roadway hazards to a central system, from a fleet of vehicles equipped with hazard detection sensors. Additionally disclosed is an optimized method of clearing hazard warnings from the central system once a hazard no longer exists.

Figure 1 illustrates a typical Roadway hazard Geo-mapping alert and repair system. These systems aim to collect information relating to hazards and defects in the roadway network and offer a service to road users and organisations to alert them to the presence of such hazards. This service enables road users to avoid delays and dangers by planning alternative routes to avoid the reported hazards. More sophisticated systems employ a fleet of vehicles equipped with sensors that continually drive the roadway network, detecting and reporting hazards.

    The innovation described in this disclosure is a software program that has the ability to significantly reduce the system resources required to implement a roadway hazard warning system, leading to a smarter and greener implementation.

FIGURE 1 : Typical existing Roadway Hazard Geo-Mapping, Alert and Repair System
Solution Overview:
This improved method of reporting hazards to a central system from a fleet of vehicles equipped with hazard detection sensors will
1. Reduce significantly the system resources required to operate such a system.

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2. Improve the performance of such systems.
3. Include an optimized mechanism to clear hazard warnings

Solution Description and typical Embodiment: The improvement, envisage that a software program will reside on each vehicle that is equipped with sensors to detect roadway hazards, this program will correlate the locations of hazards broadcast by the central system to the vehicles GPS units, with hazards, that the vehicles on-board sensors detects. The innovative step is locating the decision point on whether a hazard is existing, changed or new, at the vehicle, rather than at the central system. By moving the decision point to the vehicle, intelligence and processing is being distributed to all vehicles in the fleet, improving efficiency and speed of the overall system and simplifying the complexity of the central system

The following steps describe a typical embodiment, the steps are also illustrated in Figure 2.

The software program will run on a processor located on board each sensor


equipped vehicle in the fleet.

The software program will take inputs from


The vehicles GPS system

The vehicles hazard detection sensors
The central system ( typically via a radio, cellular or satellite link)

On a regular basis the central system will broadcast the location and other


attributes (e.g. dimensions) of all known hazards to all vehicles in the fleet.

The software program running at each vehicle in the fleet will store the hazard