The basic idea of an intelligent transport system is delivering more efficient transport through the application of information and communication technology. An intelligent transport system will guide us towards smooth, safe, economical and environmentally friendly modes of travel and direct individual choices and transport system development to a direction that is desirable for society.
An intelligent transport system
- produces efficient solutions to meet our mobility and transport needs
- continuously provides a traveller with travel and traffic information and information about the conditions that impact them: travellers can plan their journeys, transport becomes more predictable and in case of a disruption, information and assistance will be readily available
- enables more effective use of transport infrastructure and transport services
- facilitates more efficient capacity use over the transport network
- delivers a transport system that is smooth, safe and environmentally friendly
Focus areas of the Ministry of Transport and Communications’ Strategy for Intelligent Transport are efficiency, safety and environmental friendliness.
In 2010, the EU published its Intelligent Transport System Directive ”on the framework for the deployment of Intelligent Transport Systems in the field of road transport and for interfaces with other modes of transport”. It aims to improve road safety, for example by developing information exchange in transport management.
The following actions are at the core of the directive:
Multimodal travel information services
Coherent interfaces for exchanging information about public transport routes and timetables. This will promote door-to-door journey planning services. In Finland, such services include Helsinki Region Transport’s
Journey Planner and the Finnish Transport Agency’s Matka.fi service.
Real-time traffic information services
The directive’s definitions are relevant to four types of data: road data (e.g. road geometry), changing traffic data (e.g. short-term roadworks), traffic circulation plans (detours) and real-time traffic information (road conditions and traffic fluency).
Road safety related traffic information
These include slippery roads, poor visibility, an accident disrupting the traffic and obstacles on the road.
eCall emergency call system
The system sends an automatic message to the Emergency Response Centre when the airbag in a vehicle is triggered. The service will be introduced in all type-approved cars from late 2014.
Reservation services for safe and secure parking places for trucks and commercial vehicles
A lack of adequately safe and secure parking places for trucks is a problem in many European countries. These specifications concern data exchange that helps drivers find safe parking places on their routes, and also allows them to make reservations ahead of time. The establishment of such parking places in Finland, for example at border crossings, is being discussed.