In the Slovenian start-up company A.s.K, we have developed an intelligent collision prevention system COPS@road (Collision Preventing Safety System). This is a warning system with detection and signs to alert drivers in real-time to increase their caution on dangerous road sections. The insurance company Zavarovalnica Triglav runs several projects and activities for increasing road safety in Slovenia. As part of the project Working Together to Promote Improved Traffic Safety in Slovenia, Zavarovalnica Triglav is co-funding placing COPS@road warning systems in various regions of Slovenia. Closely cooperating with Slovenian municipalities, who can apply for financial support for this system, both partners run active communication campaign to increase road safety.
In June 2014 we launched the campaign with a call for Slovenian municipalities, inviting them to apply for co-funding of the innovative intelligent system COPS@road for dangerous road sections. The main co-funder, Zavarovalnica Triglav, granted a financial budget to equip 12 dangerous road sections with COPS@road warning systems within one year. Therefore, each municipality had to pay only 40 % of the system cost, another 40 % was paid by Zavarovalnica Triglav and 20 % was contributed by A.s.K.
One of the main criteria for choosing the most appropriate road sections were the road accident statistics, for which we closely cooperated with local police offices and municipalities.
By July 2015, we had chosen and installed the COPS@road systems on 10 intersections around Slovenia in the municipalities of Krško, Zagorje ob Savi, Novo mesto, Ribnica, Hoče-Slivnica, Litija, Prevalje, Beltinci, Mengeš, Žalec and 2 underpasses in Trebnje and Ptuj. More than 150 road accidents, including some fatal crashes, have been recorded in past years at these 12 dangerous junctions that have now been fitted with the COPS@road warning system.
Alongside each, we actively run communication on increasing road safety.
The first 6 systems were installed in November/December 2014 and after reviewing Police statistic one year later in November 2015, we found that only 2 accidents had occurred this year on all 6 road sections where, statistically speaking, more than 90 accidents were recorded in the last 5 years.
Continuation of the project in 2016
Since the first campaign ended successfully and there was interest in cooperating in the future, we set further goals for cooperation with the main aim of increasing traffic safety and decreasing road accidents even more.
In January 2016, we released a new call for Slovenian municipalities to apply for co-funding from Zavarovalnica Triglav for COPS@road warning systems with a value up to 5,000 EUR. We are aiming to equip another 12 dangerous road sections in 2016. The call for municipalities is open until February 19, 2016. In the new season, when possible, we will also focus on children, so we will implement the mascot of Zavarovalnica Triglav Kuža Pazi (“Watch doggy”), who is designed to educate children on safety and responsible behaviour.
Improvements to the COPS@road warning system
In the company A.s.K, we were able to technically develop the COPS@road system even further and in 2016 we are presenting a new generation of the system with detection and warning displays for a broader spectrum of road sections – intelligent warning alerts on priority lanes, alerts on pedestrian crossings, alerts on road sections that are dangerous for cyclists, unprotected railroad crossings etc. Furthermore, the system now enables us to record extensive statistics of traffic metrics (traffic density, speed, number of ‘car encounters’ etc.) and also contains information on actual slowdowns of vehicles upon activation of the warning signal.