Official US Government Icon

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure Site Icon

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) Use Cases for SS4A

The Safe Streets and Roads for All (SS4A) grant program provides funding for supplemental planning and demonstration activities to inform the development and improvement of Comprehensive Safety Action Plans (referred to as “Action Plans”). Applicants may—and are encouraged to—include supplemental planning activities and/or demonstration activities to support an Action Plan within either SS4A grant type: Planning and Demonstration Grants or Implementation Grants.

Eligible supplemental planning and demonstration activities must measure potential benefits through data collection and evaluation and inform an Action Plan’s list of projects and strategies (or, another area of an Action Plan).

The following are examples of intelligent transportation systems (ITS) use cases. These examples are potential operational and/or technology-focused activities, some of which may be eligible as SS4A supplemental planning and demonstration activities if they are temporary, small-scale, and inform an Action Plan.

Eligible ITS-Focused Activities

Traffic Conflict Analysis

Traffic conflict analysis that leverages cloud computing, artificial intelligence, and video analytics (which offers predictive insight into when, where, and why crashes are most likely to occur) to its high-injury network corridors can be used in supplemental planning activities. Data analysis integrating conflict analytics can be integrated into road safety audits (RSAs) to identify and prioritize projects.

Machine learning/artificial intelligence techniques to predict conflicts can be done in two ways: active and passive. For a passive system, like an RSA, a post-hoc analysis would be used to identify hotspots. The active approach uses the predictive capability and actively warns road users. 

A group of people in a room looking at computer screens filled with data.
Traffic conflict analysis can leverage video analytics and cloud computing.

Connected and Automated Vehicle Data

Leveraging connected and automated vehicle hard braking data and other data collected from companies or original equipment manufacturers can be used to try to predict high-risk incident locations.

There may be other data sets that can be included, like weather data, historical traffic data, and historical incident data that can be used to determine the probability that a crash might occur.

A side view of the front of a car traveling on the road with faint signal connectivity imagery.
Connected vehicle data can be used to try to predict high-risk incident locations. 

Automatic Incident Detection

Automatic incident detection systems—video analytics with closed-circuit television (CCTV)—can identify when a crash occurs and verify crashes faster to divert traffic and provide post-crash care.

Three diagrams showing 1) an emergent traffic incident on the highway, 2) the traffic operations center receiving information from the crash site, and 3) vehicles at the traffic incident receiving information from the traffic operations center.
Traffic incident detection systems use video analytics with CCTV to provide real-time driver data.

At left: Vehicles at a crosswalk receiving signals that pedestrians are using the crosswalk. At right: A car stopped at a red stoplight receiving a signal that an individual in a wheelchair is crossing in front of them.
Intelligent infrastructure can be used to identify pedestrians in a signalized intersection and to create a wheelchair smart intersection crossing.

Intelligent Infrastructure

Intelligent infrastructure can help improve safety for vulnerable road users.

For example, thermal cameras or other technologies can identify the presence of vulnerable road users in a crosswalk and adjust the time (if appropriate) of the walk signal to add green time at signalized intersections to allow for safe crossing. 

Mobile-Accessible Signals

A mobile accessible pedestrian signal system (PED-SIG) allows for an automated call from a smartphone of a visually impaired pedestrian to a traffic signal and provides audio cues to safely navigate the crosswalk. 

Conflict Prediction and Warnings

Piloting a system that issues a safety warning if vehicles are on a crash trajectory by monitoring and analyzing approaching vehicles and predicting conflicts is an eligible demonstration activity. 

Such technology can identify the location of pedestrians through CCTV images and then turn them into personal safety messages that are broadcast to connected vehicles and generate basic safety messages for non-connected vehicles that can be used on dynamic message signs.

Two cars on a road sending basic safety messages between them and surrounding infrastructure.
Connected vehicles can communicate with infrastructure to predict conflicts and generate safety warnings.

Intelligent Speed Management

Intelligent speed management includes deploying the following technologies:  

  • A curve speed warning system - An application that alerts drivers of appropriate travel speeds on curves. These applications leverage ITS technologies and may leverage vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) communications and technologies. 
  • Dynamic speed harmonization or variable speed limit systems. 
  • Speed warning school zones - An application that alerts drivers if their vehicle is traveling above the speed limit in a school zone.  
A digital illustration of a truck on the highway receiving a "Curve Ahead" signal.
A curve speed warning alerts the driver if their current speed is too fast for an approaching curve.

Work Zone Warning Systems

Piloting a real-time work zone warning system broadcasting service that can provide up-to-date work zone updates to drivers through messaging and providing a personalized, multimodal routing application is an eligible demonstration activity.  Such technologies include the following:

  • Connected vests for workers - Transmitters could be used to provide warnings to drivers of work zone areas and other events when workers are present. 
  • Work zone intrusion detection systems that recognize when a work zone intrusion is occurring, and provide audible, visual, or vibratory alarms to rapidly alert drivers and field workers of the intrusion. 
  • Work zone data exchange (WZDx) - Make harmonized work zone data available for third-party use to make travel on public roads safer and more efficient through ubiquitous access to data on work zone activity. Get data on work zones into vehicles to help automated driving systems (ADS) and human drivers navigate more safely. 
A digital illustration of road work at an intersection where a warning is sent from the road work infrastructure to approaching vehicles.
A work zone infrastructure warning alerts drivers to use caution when traveling through a work zone.

Proven Safety Countermeasures

Technology-based Proven Safety Countermeasures include speed safety cameras, leading pedestrian intervals, pedestrian hybrid beacons, rectangular rapid-flashing beacons, and yellow change intervals. Learn more about these and other Proven Safety Countermeasures on the Federal Highway Administration’s Proven Safety Countermeasures website.

Wrong-Way Driving Warning Systems

Wrong-way driving warning systems use ITS technologies to automatically detect vehicles entering a roadway in the wrong direction and activate a variety of warnings and alerts to the driver and other motorists of the wrong-way vehicle.

Advanced Traffic Management and Advanced Traveler Information Systems

Advanced traffic management and advanced traveler information systems include the following:

  • Queue warning systems that detect bottlenecks and queues and provide drivers of approaching vehicles with timely warnings of existing and impending queues.
  • An application that can alert vehicles of a crash or other event to prevent secondary crashes.
  • Road weather information and management systems collect information about road weather conditions and alert drivers of adverse conditions to slow down or re-route. 
A digital illustration of two vehicles and a motorcycle approaching icy road conditions receiving a warning alert.
A road weather connected vehicle application issues alerts and advisories of unsafe road weather conditions.

Railroad Crossing Warning Systems

Railroad crossing warning systems alert vehicles when a train is approaching. 

"Connected Vehicle Safety For Rail: Warns drivers if there is a train approaching and if there is a potential risk of collision, as well as provides drivers with information on the estimated amount of time until the train clears the intersection." An illustration of a railroad crossing with a train approaching and vehicles receiving an "approaching train" alert.
Connected vehicle safety for rail application.

Smart Infrastructure

Piloting “smart infrastructure” through vehicle-to-everything (V2X) technology that provides information to drivers on signal phasing and timing and alerts about potential conflicts with bicyclists, pedestrians, and all vulnerable road users is an eligible demonstration activity.

Emergency vehicle preemption, transit signal priority, and intelligent traffic signal systems are among the most deployed or planned applications for connected vehicles.

Adding extra green time at signalized intersections for transit vehicles, snowplows, or freight vehicles helps the vehicles avoid a stop at a red light. This additional time can also help a bus arrive at stops on time, reduce snowplow delays, or reduce truck idling for freight vehicles along an arterial corridor near a freight facility. 

An illustration of an intersection with buses, pedestrians, and trucks. A traffic signal communicates with the surrounding vehicles to determine traffic signal priority.
Transit signal priority gives signal priority to transit vehicles approaching a signalized intersection.

School Zone Warning System

Piloting a school zone warning system using V2X is an eligible demonstration activity. This includes an application that allows vehicles to recognize when entering a school zone and identify children and bicyclists that may have a transmitter.