Winnipeg-based startup MicroTraffic launches grant application program to help Canadian cities improve road safety

Applications now open for eligible government bodies to receive specialized intersection assessments using AI

TORONTO, Aug. 11, 2020 /CNW/ - Almost 8 in 10 road fatalities happen at locations where no fatalities had occurred in the past.* Yet currently, only historical crash data that involves a fatality - not near misses - is being used to make infrastructure change.

Governmental departments and agencies across Canada can now proactively improve road safety and reduce fatalities by leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) that assesses near misses and intersection risks in cities - through a grant program supported by Winnipeg-based startup MicroTraffic, and funded by Aviva Canada.

"By giving traffic engineers proactive information based on serious near-misses, we can tell them where and how the next fatalities are likely to happen so they can intervene," said Craig Milligan, CEO and co-founder of MicroTraffic. "This really is a game changer for cities so we're encouraging all municipalities and provincial road authority departments to apply so we can work with them to make their local roads safer."

"At Aviva, we're committed to making our roads safer for Canadians through our social impact platform, Take Back Our Roads," says Catherine Brown, Vice President of Marketing and Corporate Social Responsibility at Aviva Canada. "By working with innovative companies like MicroTraffic and governments, we're able to help create real change to improve road safety in Canada."

MicroTraffic's artificial intelligence tool uses pre-existing traffic cameras and automatically detects and traces the path and speed of vehicles, pedestrians, and bicycles to identify near misses. If the rate of near misses is abnormally high for a particular vehicle movement or pedestrian crossing, cities can use MicroTraffic's data to proactively make changes to signal timing, add signs, or even reconfigure the physical layout of the intersection.

To date, 40 governmental departments and agencies in North America -- including in the Greater Toronto Area, Los Angeles, Austin, Detroit, New Jersey, Montreal, Calgary, and Edmonton -- have programmed over $200 million of road safety improvements using MicroTraffic's diagnostic technology: changing the signal timing, adding signs, and even reconfiguring intersections' physical layouts. Some cities have seen select intersections drop from 15 critical near-misses per day to zero after working with MicroTraffic and implementing recommended improvements.

Key application details

    --  The grant application program is open until September 8(th)  to
        provincial, regional and municipal governmental departments and agencies
        responsible for traffic safety and road management
    --  Applicants must be situated in cities with a population of 100,000 or
        more in order to be eligible
    --  Up to five cities (10 intersections per city) will be selected to
        receive the granting opportunity.
    --  The decision will be based on the needs of each city and their
        commitment to road safety and collaboration
    --  This granting opportunity is based on a cost sharing model. Governmental
        departments and agencies selected will be expected to pay 25% of the
        costs up to maximum of $12,500.

Quick facts

    --  Approximately 156,000 people are injured or killed on Canadian roads
        each year
    --  Auto collisions, including those with pedestrians and cyclists, are the
        leading cause of pediatric injury and death globally
    --  MicroTraffic's data shows 75% of fatalities occur at locations where
        fatalities have not previously occurred
    --  Some cities using MicroTraffic's diagnostic data have seen near misses
        in select intersections reduced from 15 to zero per day after
        implementing recommended improvements.

About MicroTraffic

MicroTraffic is a Winnipeg-based start-up and leading provider of microscopic traffic data for road safety engineers. MicroTraffic's technology is based on computer vision, video analytics, machine learning, predictive modelling, and the safe systems philosophy. They assist engineers to apply surrogate safety methods for proactive decision making. MicroTraffic produces conflict reports for individual traffic safety studies and offers a proactive road safety network screening service.

              Badeau, 2018.
                         Evaluation of stop-controlled
                         intersections in Montreal: analysis
                         of fatal and injury collisions.
                         Presentation to 2018 Transportation
                         Association of Canada Conference,
                         Saskatoon, SK.

SOURCE MicroTraffic Inc.