The system is designed to reduce the number of wildlife-related crashes that occur along this stretch of Highway 160.

July 31, 2008

LINDON, UT—The Colorado Department of Transportation has launched a new system that alerts drivers to the presence of wildlife near a highway, and they are using SmartSensor HD to monitor the effectiveness of the system.

The two-tiered approach uses electro-magnetic field sensors to detect animals within a one-mile stretch of Highway 160 in southern Colorado. When an animal is detected, the sensor triggers variable message signs on the highway that warn drivers to slow down and watch for wildlife. SmartSensor HD will help assess the system's effectiveness by monitoring vehicle speeds before and after a message appears on the VMS.

According to state officials, the system is designed to reduce the number of wildlife-related crashes that occur along this stretch of Highway 160. Statistics show that nearly two-thirds of all accidents in that area involve deer, and the DOT hopes to change driver behavior without adversely affecting wildlife movement.