As autonomous vehicles develop around the world, we’re seeing a greater need for accurate data, both in live and static forms.
Live data enables dynamic routing, but it can be hard to pass the data from device to device quickly enough. A 5G network could help this issue, but it may take years to become a reality.
Static data is equally important as you need to have accurate base data which shows the difference between a road and a pavement, where a vehicle is allowed to drive, and any routing restrictions or speed limits. OS & GeoPlace have been working on this via the OS MasterMap Highways Network product, with Department for Transport investing £3 million pounds in its creation.
The debate around safe routing for HGVs has been a hot topic for some time. A standard satnav doesn’t contain the detailed information needed to route a HGV – giving the driver, or transport company, the height, weight and length restrictions that will avoid those all-too-common news items where vehicles become trapped under bridges or in tight corners in country villages.
Last year, Transport Minister Robert Goodwill MP announced a £3 million Department for Transport (DfT) and OS project to help create a digital road map giving the most detailed information yet to councils and emergency services. The new product would have the potential to transform how all levels of government maintain and improve roads by detailing information such as traffic calming measures and height and weight restrictions. Alongside this planned product, plans were announced for an entry-level open data version of the road map to be made available. So what’s the latest on these products, and which product is best for those wanting safe routing for HGVs?