The Mumbai Traffic police have written to the civic authorities to install more Area Traffic Control (ATC) signals to slash signal waiting time for commuters. Traffic police officers said of the 750 signals in the city, only 253 are installed based on ATC.
The ATC project helps the police in transforming the conventional signalling system of the city’s roads into a real-time computer-controlled one. Traffic police said most of the ATC signals are installed on the VVIP route, especially from the airport towards Taj Mahal Hotel in Colaba, “Apart from these, all the other signals across the city are manually controlled,” said BK Upadhyay, JCP (Traffic).
“We have requested the BMC to install ATC signals across the city to ease out traffic at major junctions as these signals do not have to be controlled manually. Once a time is set on the signal, it automatically adjusts the timing of one signal cycle according to the traffic volume. The sensors fitted in the road gauge the amount of vehicles passing through it and adjusts the signal cycle according to it,” said Upadhyay.
Upadhyay said that the system has proved useful as the sensors of the road act as traffic controllers. Based of the volume of vehicles the signal cycles of these junctions adjusts 20 seconds late or 20 seconds early than the regular cycle.
“The signal cycle helps in easing traffic to a great extent and the number of vehicles passing though the junction is controlled by a computer. There is no need for a traffic constable to adjust the signal after every hour,” added Upadhyay. Through the control room set up at the traffic police headquarters, officers said they can keep a tab on the ATC signals and coordinate with the constables.
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Officers said as the volume of the vehicles of the road increase daily, there is a need for ATC signals as existing signals in the city have long cycles . “When it is done manually by a constable the longer the signal cycle, the easier it is to control traffic,” said a traffic police officer.