Use of new technology for current and user-related traffic information

Resolution of 6 November 2018 on the basis of the recommendation by the Executive Committee Traffic Technology in collaboration with the Executive Committees Vehicle Engineering and Adult Road Users

German Road Safety Council - 2018


All information, whether traffic information such as traffic jams, roadworks, closures etc., obstructions, hazards, road routes, road signs, weather and road conditions are important elements for the choice of route and manner of driving. With new technology it is already possible to provide this information directly to drivers in the vehicle by means of data transmission. Therefore, suddenly occurring events such as accidents or other hazards can be communicated immediately. This can result in greater attentiveness and adaptation of driving behaviour which therefore prevents accidents. Precise and detailed information results in proactive route planning, less stress and is therefore an important component for greater road safety.


The following relates to data and information which are provided by private and public providers. This can be new information or updates of existing information, for example supplements to the basic map data of a navigation system with additional local and time-dependent information.

The advantages with regard to road safety which result from new technologies and the provision of information are not yet sufficiently exploited. 

Communication networks and the performance of terminal devices have made great progress over the past years. Further use should be made of this potential. At present, modern media are only rarely used for communication of information to road users. Road signs - supplemented with traffic control systems - are clearly predominant. Information via radio traffic warnings is the usual standard. Communication of traffic information is largely analog.

New technologies and standards for data transfer offer the possibility of providing drivers with highly up-to-date information with reference to specific locations. This information cannot and should not replace installed road signs. However, it provides the possibility of communicating additional information and influencing driving behaviour in a manner which cannot be achieved by present traffic control.

Projects such as "LENA 4 ITS" or the "C-ITS Corridor Netherlands-Germany-Austria" show that this technology is more advanced than its implementation. The LENA 4 ITS project examined the possibilities for communicating route recommendations directly to users in their cars; the C-ITS Corridor develops dynamic warnings for roadworks, which can also include precise recording of mobile roadworks.

Collaboration between public and private agencies is essential. Safety-relevant data such as icy areas, lane obstructions, unsecured accident locations, temporary roadworks, poor visibility, wrong-way drivers and extreme weather must be provided to everyone.

New information technologies provide the possibility of informing drivers of hazards in good time. I.e. precise information can be provided both in the vehicle and on the road (dynamic LED road signs). Research shows that the technology is available and also that data can be provided via the mobility data market (MDM).

In principle, the possibilities for use while driving are restricted by § 23 (1a) of the Road Traffic Regulations (StVO). From the point of view of road safety, distraction-free communication of the information must be enabled.


The German Road Safety Council issues the following recommendations for the use of new technologies for current and user-related traffic information:

  • The availability of digital traffic information for road users must be improved.
  • To increase road safety and in the interest of road users, all safety-relevant data must be made usable for existing technologies and terminal devices. 
  • Concepts must be developed, which support public management for the provision and use of digitalised traffic information.
  • Collaboration between the various levels (public road operators, other public agencies, private providers) is, as required by the EU in accordance with "Directive 2010/40/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 7 July 2010" on the framework for the deployment of intelligent transport systems in the field of road transport and for interfaces with other modes of transport, must be advanced as quickly as possible. As a start, in test areas of selected sections of the network, for example 
    • Combination of public and private data and
    • Linking of all communication providers (e.g. via radio stations, navigation service providers, mobile telephone providers, etc.), 
    as well as their future framework conditions for standardisation must be tested. Therefore the appointment of a national coordination agency is welcomed.


Dr. Walter Eichendorf