FERNDALE (WWJ) – It’s a smart sign that does the thinking for you but you may not even have noticed it. The Michigan Department of Transportation put up a curve warning sign over a year ago at the I-75/9 Mile Road curve.
MDOT spokesman Rob Morosi says the sign is constantly calculating the weather conditions and the geometrics of the curve.
“There are algorithms being done within the signs constantly and if you are approaching a curve too fast for either the geometrics of the curve or the weather conditions it will alert you that you probably need to reduce your speed,” Morosi said.
If a driver is going too fast the sign flashes a warning to slow down.
Morosi admits many people may never have noticed it.
“If it’s rush hour and if traffic is crawling obviously you are not going to be going too fast – you are just going to see blank messages or your going to see generic message,” said Morosi.
The sign was paid for by $1.5 million in earmarked federal money. Does it work? The state police numbers show there were 30 fewer crashes in the area last year over 2011. However, there were much fewer crashes than that in 2010.
Here’s a break down of the numbers:
October 1, 20 09 to 2010 … 180 accidents
October 2010 to October 2011 … 260 accidents
October 2011 to October 2012 … 231 accidents