Roads that honk: Innovative, intelligent road systems for Indian highways

Indian national highways

(Photo: CarDekho)

HP Lubricants and Leo Burnett India are working together to make the Indian national highways safer for driving. They have innovated and implemented the world’s first anti-collision vehicle management system on the NH1, which connects Jammu-Srinagar and has been listed as one of the most dangerous highways in the world by National Geographic.

The project is known as 'Roads That Honk', and to prevent accidents on sharp turns on hilly roads, it consists of SmartLife poles at both sides of sharp curves and hairpin bends. Both the poles communicate with each other with the help of wireless technology and monitor the incoming traffic with radar systems. The poles detect the speeds of incoming vehicles and then communicate with each other to alert the drivers of the approaching vehicles on either side with the sound of a horn.

The poles transmit an electromagnetic wave of 24 GHz frequency range and measure the shift of the reflected electromagnetic wave. The moving vehicles cause the frequency shift which is known as Doppler effect. As the distance between the pole and the vehicle changes, the frequency shift also increases and this helps to calculate the speed of the vehicle.

According to the Police Department which looks over the Jammu-Srinagar Highway, the number of accidents have significantly reduced after the implementation of the SmartLife pole. Currently, the progress of this system is being observed, and it is likely to be installed at more locations across the country in the near future.

India has one of the highest road accidents in the world. According to reports published by the government, more than 140,000 people were killed in road accidents in 2015. While automakers are busy making our cars safer, we also need to make sure that our highways are also safe. India has a vivid geography, and the SmartLife pole can be certainly used in many places to reduce the risk of accidents.