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ogy known as SCATS (Sydney Coordi- nated Adaptive Traffic System) in 1982. SCATS allows us to manage traffic flow according to the time of day or day of week, as well helping us minimise delays caused by traffic incidents. Today VicRoads is recognised as a

world-leader in SCATS – with 90 per cent of our traffic signals integrated into the system and with our own programs to review traffic signal operation having been adopted across the world. Perhaps

most notably, we’ve pioneered our own SCATS-based sys- tems to give Melbourne’s famous trams priority when they approach traffic signals. Victoria was also an early adopter of Variable Speed Limit

Systems. Data stations placed along our freeways monitor traffic flow and as traffic volumes reach a certain threshold, a speed limit change can be automatically triggered to avoid congestion building up and reduce the chance of crashes occurring. The system is monitored 24 hours a day by VicRoads Traffic

Management Centre team who, when necessary, can manu- ally override the system, for example if a traffic incident has occurred. The varying speed limits are conveyed to motorists via a series of electronic speed limit signs along our freeways. Another system to manage congestion we’ve helped pio- 43

neer is the use of Ramp Metering at our freeway on-ramps. Freeways are the most efficient means of carrying vehicles and therefore many transport systems have traditionally focused on getting as many vehicles onto them as possible. However, sudden surges of traffic entering freeways can have a major impact on traffic flow and quickly turn freeways into car parks. Ramp Metering allows us to regulate the density of traffic

for optimal flow along the entire freeway by using traffic sig- nals that allow one vehicle per lane, per green, to enter. As well as improving traffic flow, this system also provides safer and easier conditions for vehicles to merge from on-ramps. While the use of Ramp Metering is now fairly widespread

across the world, VicRoads is now leading the way again with a dynamic approach that balances the frequency of traffic both entering and exiting our freeways using Advanced Exit Man- agement Systems. This approach to managing freeways has proven highly

effective – with data showing that since the introduction of smart technology along Melbourne’s Monash Freeway in 2004, we’ve improved average traffic speeds by 20km/h while reducing casualty crash rates by 30 per cent.

INVESTING IN THE FUTURE With an extra 2000 vehicles on our roads each week, it’s crucial that we look to the future and continue to invest in new ITS. With technology rapidly evolving, we now have greater access than ever to wide-reaching data on how are transport


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