On August 11, Mayor Eric Adams and Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS) Commissioner Dawn Pinnock announced a pilot initiative in intelligent speed assist (ISA) for 50 city vehicles from nine agencies. This is the latest initiative in the DCAS Vision Zero Safe Fleet Transition Plan.
Participating agencies include DCAS, the Department of Transportation, the Business Integrity Initiative, the Department of Parks and Recreation, the Taxi and Limousine Commission, the Department of Correction, the Department of Housing Preservation and Development, the Department of Environmental Protection, and the mayor’s Street Conditions Observation Unit. DOT Commissioner Ydanis Rodriguez and Executive Director of Transportation Alternatives Danny Harris, joined the announcement, along with NYC Chief Fleet Officer and DCAS Deputy Commissioner Keith Kerman.
The most basic function of ISA is to prevent a vehicle from speeding. Most existing speed governors set a maximum speed that a vehicle can go. ISA takes it further, combining the speed governor with vehicle telematics to adjust the maximum vehicle speed to match changing speed limits as the vehicle travels. In Europe, ISA is now required, as of July 2022, for all new light-duty vehicles.
DCAS has begun the implementation of this initiative by retrofitting 50 city vehicles including 16 different makes ranging from sedans and pickups to box trucks and dump trucks with the SafeSpeed system from MAGTEC. The technology includes a 15-second release button to help drivers address unexpected driving situations.
DCAS will partner with U.S. Department of Transportation Volpe Center to conduct a six-month assessment of the technology including tracking speeds, hard braking and accelerating, and crash rates through telematics. Volpe will also interview participating drivers. DCAS conducted pre-launch training at the Parks Department in July and will host additional operator training on August 22. DCAS plans to discuss initial program results at the Vision Zero Forum on October 25. If successful, DCAS plans to expand the initiative starting in 2023.