Together For Safer Roads, Bellevue, WA and University of Washington Partner To Accelerate Progress on Vision Zero
TSR Members Brisk Synergies and Republic Services Collaborate on First-of-Its-Kind Community-Wide Near Miss Analysis
BROOKLYN, NY – Sept. 10, 2019 – Together for Safer Roads (TSR), a coalition of leading private sector companies driven to save lives, today announced a partnership with the City of Bellevue, WA, in which TSR will lead and fund a research project focused on visual analytics to capture near miss data in the city. TSR member Brisk Synergies Tech Corp., will collect traffic data from the city for two months, then analyze the correlation between travel behavior, patterns, crashes and conflicts. TSR member Republic Services will provide data and expertise on using the analysis to improve fleet safety. In addition, The Pacific Northwest Transportation Consortium (PacTrans) at the University of Washington will advise the development of the research and provide guidance on analysis.
The City of Bellevue has long been an innovative force in reducing collisions and using relevant technology to create safer roads. The City’s Transportation Department has been nationally recognized for its work in transportation safety. In 2015, the City adopted Vision Zero, an effort to eliminate traffic deaths and serious injury collisions on city streets by 2030. Bellevue has a range of programs and work groups focused on improving roadway safety. The TSR Near Miss Analysis is the latest step toward reaching Vision Zero.
The City of Bellevue has 80 closed circuit TV traffic cameras. The project team will analyze video from up to 40 cameras in order to ensure a representative data set for the study. Using Brisk’s BriskVANTAGE video intelligence platform, raw video footage will be converted from Bellevue’s 360-degree, high-definition cameras into useful data that can be searched, managed, and used to provide detailed information on near-misses and collisions. The goal of the project is to analyze the correlation between past collisions in the City and “surrogate measures” of safety – developed by Brisk Synergies – used to predict where crashes would occur without evasive action. Data is expected to be available by year’s end.
“It’s rewarding to work with a road safety-focused city like Bellevue to execute such important research – no one has done this kind of citywide, near-miss analysis before,” said David Braunstein, President, Together for Safer Roads. “Bellevue not only has the infrastructure in place with technology such as their CCTV cameras, but they also lead with the right mindset that investments like this are crucial to eliminating traffic deaths and serious injuries. Conducting pioneering work like this will help to accelerate progress in Bellevue, and TSR will share lessons learned with organizations, companies and cities around the world.”
“Ensuring the public’s safety is the highest responsibility of government agencies, which is why Bellevue is a Vision Zero city,” said Franz Loewenherz, Principal Transportation Planner for the City. “We’re grateful to Together For Safer Roads and its members for helping us unearth crucial insights. The information from this study will be incorporated in our Vision Zero Action Plan. It will help us predict where and how collisions happen so we can work proactively to prevent them.”
“Helping to proactively address road safety issues and detect dangerous interactions – essentially preventing collisions before they happen – is our number one goal and supports the adoption of Vision Zero by cities like Bellevue,” said Charles Chung, CEO of Brisk Synergies. “Through the deployment of a network-wide traffic safety monitoring solution, we can identify hotspots, apply machine learning to identify risk-contributing factors, execute high injury network studies and deliver a complete traffic-flow analysis. It’s our pleasure to be working with Bellevue through TSR and we look forward to helping the City work toward their goal of reducing traffic deaths and serious injury collisions on city streets to zero by the year 2030.”
“There is nothing more important to us than safety – the safety of our employees and the communities we serve,” said Jim Olson, senior vice president of safety at Republic Services. “Vision Zero is a powerful and transformative initiative that we believe will help significantly reduce serious incidents and fatalities throughout Bellevue and the surrounding areas, helping make the City as safe as possible for drivers and pedestrians. We commend the Bellevue City Council for championing this forward-thinking initiative.”
“We are excited to build on our near miss research and take it to scale across the community of Bellevue,” said, Dr. Yinhai Wang, Director, PacTrans and the Smart Transportation Applications and Research Laboratory (STAR Lab) at the University of Washington. “Near misses are leading indicators of collisions, so reducing them will prevent crashes.”
ABOUT TOGETHER FOR SAFER ROADS
Together for Safer Roads is a global NGO that works with government, businesses and community stakeholders on local projects, fleet safety management and technology initiatives to prevent traffic crashes, injuries and deaths. TSR was started in conjunction with the UN’s Decade of Road safety and has partners around the world. TSR’s members include AB InBev, AIG, AT&T, CalAmp, Republic Services, Lyft, Ericsson, GM, iHeartMedia, Octo Telematics, Geotab, PepsiCo, UPS, Walmart, and others. Learn more at www.togetherforsaferroads.org.
ABOUT THE CITY OF BELLEVUE
Known as a “City in a Park” with nearly 100 parks and a vast network of trails and greenbelts, Bellevue is the fifth largest city in Washington state. The Eastside city spans 33.5 square miles from Lake Washington to Lake Sammamish. As part of the Innovation Triangle, Bellevue is the high-tech and retail center with a downtown skyline of gleaming high-rises, a diverse population of approximately 145,000 and schools that are consistently rated among the best in the country. To learn more about why Bellevue is the city where you want to be, visit www.bellevuewa.gov.
ABOUT BRISK SYNERGIES
Brisk Synergies is the leader in automated road safety analysis. By applying AI and Deep Learning on traffic video, Brisk Synergies helps transportation engineers and planners to better understand their road safety problems and identify solutions without waiting for collisions to occur. The system utilizes existing CCTV traffic camera to perform automated video analysis of traffic flow for effective and immediate road safety diagnosis and evaluation of interventions. This enables urban transportation engineers and planners to continuously make better, more knowledgeable decisions on how to improve traffic flow and reduce collisions. Learn more at https://brisksynergies.com
ABOUT REPUBLIC SERVICES
Republic Services, Inc. is an industry leader in U.S. recycling and non-hazardous solid waste disposal. Through its subsidiaries, Republic’s collection operations, transfer stations, recycling processing centers, landfills, and energy and environmental services provide effective solutions to make responsible recycling and waste disposal effortless for its 14 million customers. More than 36,000 employees are committed to providing a superior experience while fostering a sustainable Blue Planet® for future generations to enjoy a cleaner, safer and healthier world. For more information, visit RepublicServices.com, or follow us at Facebook.com/RepublicServices, @RepublicService on Twitter and @republic_services on Instagram. For further information: Media Media@RepublicServices.com (480) 757-9770
ABOUT THE UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON
The University of Washington’s Smart Transportation Applications and Research (STAR) lab enhances the strength of ITS research and education at the university. Major objectives of the STAR Lab are: support advanced ITS research; cultivate ITS professionals; explore effective solutions to transportation problems; provide hand-on training instruments and software applications for students in ITS classes; and construct a bridge between the UW and agencies of transportation practice. Learn more at http://www.uwstarlab.org/