The Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation has announced the cooperative statewide procurement of Mobileye Shield+ Driver Assistance System (DAS) technology for all public transportation providers in Virginia. This is the first statewide cooperative procurement of its kind, making Virginia a national leader in promoting technology in public transportation while also aiming to reduce cost burdens on local public transit agencies. As part of a $450,000 pilot program, DRPT is also providing funding to ten public transit agencies to retrofit up to 50 buses with innovative pedestrian collision avoidance systems that will alert transit operators of pedestrians and bicyclists that enter the path of the vehicle.
“One of the main goals of the Department of Rail and Public Transportation is to ensure safe and reliable transportation for Virginia’s citizens, and we actively seek opportunities to implement new technology to make our transit infrastructure safer. Driver Assistance Systems are a great way to add yet another safety feature to our fleets. We are excited about this opportunity to bring this technology to our transit systems and look forward to the positive impact they will have as a result of implementation,” said DRPT Director Jennifer Mitchell.
The Mobileye Shield+ DAS system adds an additional safety feature to existing buses in order to prevent potential pedestrian collisions. DAS technology includes hardware elements like cameras, sensors, and digital displays, as well as software elements to record and report incidents and note trends. DAS systems can also reduce wear on transit vehicles by encouraging more predictable bus movements.
The DAS pilot program was funded through a Statewide Transit Demonstration Grant and the Commonwealth Transportation Board’s Innovation and Technology Transportation Fund. DAS will make its first appearance on The Hopper, a downtown circulator bus operated by the Greater Lynchburg Transit Company and funded by SMART SCALE.
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