Star ratings for state routes- World Bank’s road safety initiative for 960km in Assam
Guwahati, June 10: Roads in Assam will for the first time be given star ratings to determine their safety level.
An international road safety initiative supported by the World Bank will be providing star ratings to around 960km of roads in the state.
Star ratings provide a simple and objective measurement of the level of safety provided by a road’s design. The ratings will be between one to five depending on the level of safety.
This is being done under the iRAP (International Roads Assistance Programme) project funded by the World Bank Global Road Safety Facility. Three more states — Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Gujarat — have been covered by the project.
It involved collecting video and pavement condition data of roads in Assam, and generating road safety ratings for each of the routes.
“The road inspections were done by the Indian Road Survey and Management company using an ARRB Hawkeye 2000 network survey vehicle, which is a state-of-the-art pavement data collection system. It has a fully integrated four-camera digital imaging system and an inertial measurement unit,” Richard Wix, principal consultant of ARRB (Australian Road Research Board) Group Ltd, which has provided technical inputs for the project, told The Telegraph via email.
The inspections were done in April, in which 27 road corridors were surveyed with a total length of 960.027 km.
Wix said three cameras were used to record a panoramic view of the road ahead of the vehicle and one camera was positioned at the rear of the vehicle, vertically above the pavement to allow a visual assessment of the pavement.
The inertial measurement unit allows the geometry of the road to be measured.
“The survey team also collected roughness, rutting and texture information, which can be used by pavement engineers to assess the condition of the pavement as can the digital imaging,” he said.
He said some of the roads in Assam were very rugged and caused damage to the survey vehicle. However, the damage was quickly repaired with little delay to the survey.
Some of the roads were selected as they have been earmarked for improvement by the World Bank for a forthcoming road project. The other roads chosen, including road corridors with significant traffic volumes along which significant numbers of fatalities and serious accidents have occurred, will benefit most from the outcomes of the project.
Diganta Goswami, an assistant engineer of the public works department, said data analysis of the roads would start soon.
The entire work should be over by September.
Roads, which get four and five star rating, have safety features that are appropriate for the prevailing traffic speeds. The one and two star roads do not have appropriate road safety features.
Road engineers from Assam were taught how to rate more than 30 different road design attributes that are known to influence the likelihood of a crash and its severity from the video data using the Australian Road Research Board’s Hawkeye processing toolkit. This enables accurate processing of all collected parameters.