Road safety is a top priority for many construction companies, traveling the roads each day and working on highway construction projects. The good news for construction is it is a pressing—even urgent—matter to which policymakers and industry players are devoting time and attention. Anthony Foxx, the U.S. Transportation Secretary for the U.S. Dept. of Transportation, www.dot.gov, announced several steps he hopes will help accelerate innovation around road safety in the United States.

Secretary Foxx says the U.S. Dept. of Transportation wants to speed the nation toward an era in which “vehicle safety isn’t just about surviving crashes; it’s about avoiding them.” How? Through V2V (vehicle-to-vehicle) communication technology.

With a road full of connected, automated vehicles that can sense and communicate with other vehicles, with the environment around them, and with the transportation infrastructure, Foxx believes the technology could revolutionize road safety and even save thousands of lives.

To accomplish these feats, the department will take steps such as accelerating the schedule of NHTSA’s (National Highway Traffic Safety Admin.), www.nhtsa.gov, proposal to require V2V equipment on new vehicles; developing an expedited test plan on interference with V2V signals; and ensuring the department’s regulatory framework accelerates safety innovations. In addition, Foxx pledged to work with both the automotive and technology industries to help vehicle-automation technologies with “demonstrated” safety benefits come to market.

Technology has already changed transportation, and it will continue to reshape the way the world thinks about transportation during the next several decades. Innovation in vehicle-automation technologies is a step toward a future in which road safety and efficiency reigns supreme. It deserves to be top of mind for construction.

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