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How do road surface temperature sensors help to maximise gritting efficiencies?

Statistics reveal that on average, 22% of all UK road accidents are caused by bad weather. Therefore, it’s vital to be aware of how bad weather affects you, other motorists, your vehicle and the condition of the road surface. 

Some gritty facts:

  • Over 2 million tonnes of salt is spread across the UK's roads every year - costing over £150 million.
  • Without adequate salting, traffic delays would cost the UK £280 million every day.
  • Research shows that for every £1 spent on winter road maintenance, £8 is saved in the economy as a whole.

Icy roads are problematic, but with increased budget pressures, Councils have less access to gritting services. Local councils are not able to grit every road, priority is given to public transport routes, airports and hospitals. However, over-gritting and using resources and supplies to grit roads that don't require gritting is ineffective and costly.   Pinacl’s Road Surface Solution can significantly help maximise gritting efficiencies and intern aims to decrease the chances of accidents due to icy road conditions. Our sensor solutions alert gritters of which roads are likely to freeze, so they have the data to make informed gritting decisions enabling road maintenance vehicles to prioritise their gritting efforts; helping to make the road surfaces safer quicker to prevent crashes.

Pinacl can provide the hardware and software required to deploy a dense network of road surface temperature sensors that use state-of-the-art infrared measuring, which assures accurate, real-time road surface temperature information critical to proper deployment of anti-icing and de-icing materials. Measuring the rate and speed of changes in road surface temperatures, which are different and provide more accurate data for gritters than air temperatures.

Pinacl’s lamppost mounted set-up eliminates the disruption caused by slot-cutting, making installation and maintenance relatively easy. It can be used as a stand-alone system on bridge decks and in remote locations. The sensors are connected through LoRaWaN which ensures long range and maximum coverage, with a 4-year battery life meaning no invasive electrical work for speedy installations.

LoRaWAN is a Low Power Wide Area Network (LPWAN) specification intended for wireless battery-operated things in a regional, national or global network.

To summarise, why use road temperature sensors?

The low-cost nature of the sensors allows for more sensors to be deployed, thus increasing the spatial resolution of the observations - ideal for initialising and verifying route-based forecasts.

All data can be presented on Pinacl’s smart dashboard, the readings can be used to determine the main routes that need to be gritted as well as predict sharp decreases in temperature so that local councils can prioritise their gritting efforts; preventing them from using resources unnecessarily and enabling them to grit the roads which need gritting.

Why Pinacl?

Pinacl has installed an open access Internet of Things network within Newport as part of our Smart City offering and has already deployed road temperature sensors as part of that. Pinacl work closely with local and central government and businesses to ensure our towns and cities have the right infrastructure and systems in place to succeed in the 21st century and embrace urbanisation.

For more information on our IoT Solutions contact us here

*Statistics sourced from:  De-ice.co.uk, Compassmineralsuk.co.uk, Saltassociation.co.uk, Threecountieslining.co.uk


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