Using telematics devices in heavy vehicles to inform road policy and planning

Friday, 23 August 2019

Telematics devices in vehicles provide data about vehicle location, driving speed and distances travelled, for example.

To explore how well such telematics systems could inform road agencies about ways heavy vehicles use key freight routes and where congestion occurs, Austroads commissioned Transport Certification Australia (TCA) to analyse telematics data collected from a range of heavy vehicles, including rigid trucks, articulated combinations and special purpose vehicles.

Key Freight Routes – Heavy Vehicle Usage Data Project provides the results of this research.

“Telematics systems can provide useful statistics to help road agencies make infrastructure spending decisions,” says Tim Renowden, Data Insights Manager, TCA.

“Telematics data can provide valuable information about vehicle movements across whole road networks, and in some cases the data provides more detailed road usage information than traditional traffic surveys.”

The report provides aggregated, de-identified statistics for heavy vehicle road usage, travel speed, journey time and congestion information on 288 roads and 18 interstate corridors during 2016.

The project involved more than 4,300 heavy vehicles and 1,000 transport operators.

“However, there are nearly 100,000 registered articulated trucks and 350,000 registered heavy trucks in Australia,” says Tim.

“Data from a wider sample of vehicles would give us more reliable road use estimates.”

The report recommends key steps to develop broader freight vehicle telematics data collection. This data could be used nationally, statewide and locally to inform all levels of road policy and planning.

Report link: Key Freight Routes – Heavy Vehicle Usage Data Project

Join us for a webinar on Thursday 3 October 2019, 1pm AEST for an overview of the study, by the report author Tim Renowden and Gavin Hill.

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