The Canadians are testing out a system that combines onboard Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) technology with a digital speed limit map. It works very much like the in-car GPS navigation systems which have become so common on late model cars — but with a twist. Instead of helping you find a destination, the system, prevents you from driving any faster than the posted speed limit of the road you happen to be on.
As in a conventional GPS-equipped car or truck, the system knows which road you’re on, as well as the direction you’re traveling. This information is continuously updating as you move. But in addition to this, the system also acquires information about the posted speed limit on each road, as you drive. Once your vehicle reaches that limit, the car’s computer makes it increasingly difficult to go any faster.
Ten vehicles equipped with this technology are currently being tested in the Ottowa area; if the trail is “successful,” a wider series of tests is planned. And it’s a sure bet the entire thing will eventually be the object of a very strong-armed push aimed at making it mandatory equipment in every new car. “We are trying to assess the operational acceptance issues,” says Peter Burns of Transport Canada’s road safety directorate.
Heads Up UK!
Britain will be the first country to monitor every car journey
Big Brother behind the wheel