Evaluation of the Use of Live Aerial Video for Traffic Management

Report No: 94-R14

Published in 1995

About the report:

This report describes the evaluation of an intelligent transportation system (ITS) demonstration project in which live aerial video of traffic conditions was captured by a rotary wing aircraft operated by the Fairfax County (Virginia) Police Department. The video was transmitted to ground stations for use by Fairfax County and the Virginia Department of Transportation for incident and congestion management. The evaluation had three foci: (1) the capture and transmission of the video picture, (2) related institutional issues, and (3) the utility of the video information in incident management and traffic control. The evaluation covered a 10-month demonstration period from July 1993 to April 1994. The demonstration showed that aerial video can capture and transmit pictures of traffic flow and incidents to aid in decision making by traffic management. Throughout the evaluation period, the reliability of the system was greatly improved, resulting in a continuous daily operation (except for emergency interruptions). The aerial video has enhanced incident management in the application area and has potentially unlimited on-line applications for traffic surveillance in conjunction with various traffic management systems. Examples of off-line applications are training, planning, operational improvements, and before and after studies.

Disclaimer Statement:The contents of this report reflect the views of the author(s), who is responsible for the facts and the accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Commonwealth Transportation Board, or the Federal Highway Administration. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation. Any inclusion of manufacturer names, trade names, or trademarks is for identification purposes only and is not to be considered an endorsement.


Last updated: December 23, 2023

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