FDOT's regional traffic management center can vary the speed limit in response to rush hour or accidents and other congestion-causing incidents.
September 18, 2008
LINDON, UT—The Wavetronix SmartSensor is part of an innovative system in Florida that actually varies the speed limit depending on traffic conditions. Twenty electronic speed limit signs have been installed along Interstate 4 in Orlando, and operators at FDOT's regional traffic management center can vary the speed limit in response to rush hour or accidents and other congestion-causing incidents.
Several SmartSensors have been installed every half mile along I-4 to monitor vehicle volumes and speeds. The data generated by the sensors is transmitted to the TMC, where the 50 mile per hour posted speed limited can be adjusted to as low as 30 mph. FDOT officials say drivers tend to hit the brakes when congestion increases, causing an accordion effect that backs up traffic. By lowering the speed limit, FDOT believes traffic will flow more easily, easing traffic, improving fuel efficiency and decreasing emissions on Orlando roads.