January 11, 2023
Preliminary Results from NYC DCAS ISA Pilot Program Shows Fleet Operators Complied with Speed Limits 99 Percent of Time and Reduced Instances of Hard Braking by 36 Percent
NEW YORK – New York City Mayor Eric Adams and New York City Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS) Commissioner Dawn M. Pinnock today announced the preliminary results of active intelligent speed assistance (ISA) technology being tested in 50 city fleet vehicles and which has ensured almost universal compliance with local speed laws. Since the launch of the pilot program last August, vehicles utilizing ISA have driven over 133,400 miles and successfully traveled within speed limit parameters 99 percent of the time. Use of ISA technology also accounted for a 36 percent reduction in hard braking events, which is often an indicator of unsafe driving.
“Our administration is leading by example on street safety, and the results of the intelligent speed assistance pilot show that we can leverage technology to reduce unsafe driving behaviors,” said Mayor Adams. “This pilot helped ensure almost all drivers with this technology in their cars complied with local speed laws — undoubtedly making our city safer. Under our administration, we have continued to re-envision our fleet management policies to ensure they are aligned with our street safety and environmental goals, while continuing to deliver the services New Yorkers both rely on and deserve. This first-in-the-nation pilot should serve as a model for other states and municipalities, and one we are eager to continue in more of our fleet vehicles in the future.”
“The preliminary results are in, and our intelligent speed assistance pilot program has successfully prevented speeding and reduced instances of unsafe driving,” said DCAS Commissioner Pinnock. “Since we launched this pilot in August, our fleet vehicle operators continue to get the critical work done while prioritizing safety for themselves and others. In four months, we’ve seen a 36 percent reduction in hard braking and compliance with the local speed limits 99 percent of the time. We are inspired by this success and look forward to a complete assessment of the pilot in the months to come.”
Through the pilot program announced by Mayor Adams, ISA technology was installed on 50 city fleet vehicles to test this innovate tool to better ensure safe driving. It is among the latest safety initiatives to be implemented as part of the DCAS Safe Fleet Transition Plan for city fleet vehicles.
Through the first four months of the pilot, fleet operators abided by the speed limit 99 percent of the time. The outlying one percent represents the operator’s initial acceleration before the ISA technology kicked in and reduced their speed. In addition to complying with the speed limit, ISA also significantly reduced the necessity for hard braking. Hard braking events are often associated with unsafe driving, and with the 36 percent reduction in these events, it suggests that ISA is working to keep drivers focused.
The 50 fleet vehicles in the pilot have traveled more than 133,400 miles, with light duty vehicles accounting for 62 percent of the miles driven, followed by medium duty vehicles traveling 25 percent of the miles, and heavy-duty vehicles traveling 13 percent of the miles. The miles traveled indicate a continuity in service delivery despite the new limitations on speed and increased emphasis on safety.
Each participating fleet vehicle features an override button to temporarily disable ISA for 15 seconds. This override button may be helpful in certain hazardous situations. The override button has been used approximately 600 times in total. The use of the button seemed to occur most frequently during the early weeks of the pilot as operators tested and got used to the new technology. DCAS will continue to assess its use and determine what kind of circumstances elicited the override.
The ISA pilot will continue through early next year. At the end of the pilot, DCAS will co-author a report with the U.S. Department of Transportation’s John A. Volpe National Transportation Systems Center to share the results.
DCAS has submitted requests for grant funding from the federal government to broaden the rollout of ISA to approximately 7,500 fleet vehicles over the span of three to four years. If funding is secured, this would be the largest coordinated rollout of ISA technology in the world.
“Excessive speeding is one of the greatest safety risks,” said DCAS Deputy Commissioner and NYC Chief Fleet Officer Keith Kerman. “New York City is focused on reducing speeding through street re-design, enforcement, and speed cameras. DCAS is now taking the next step, leading the effort to design a vehicle that can’t and won’t speed in the first place.”
“I commend Mayor Adams on the early progress and success of the New York City Intelligent Speed Assistance Pilot Program,” said U.S. Representative Adriano Espaillat. “The preliminary results showing a reduction in hard braking and an increase in speed limit compliance have been extremely encouraging. I look forward to continuing to work with the Adams Administration and community leaders to ensure all New York drivers, pedestrians, and visitors are safe on our streets.”
“Ensuring that our streets are safe begins with our city fleet, and the positive results of the intelligent speed assistance technology tested on city fleet vehicles are incredibly encouraging,” said U.S. Representative Dan Goldman. “I look forward to the full assessment in the coming months and working with the City moving forward as a productive partner at the federal level to keep New Yorkers safe on the road.”
“The need for safe transportation in New York is higher than ever. More than 3,000 New Yorkers are injured and over 250 are killed each year in preventable traffic crashes,” said New York State Senator Brad Hoylman. “I commend Mayor Adams and DCAS Commissioner Pinnock for leading the way towards safer streets by testing intelligent speed assistance (ISA) technology across 50 city fleet vehicles. My Vehicle Safety Standards Act (S.9528) would take this initiative even further by ensuring new cars sold in New York contain common-sense safety technologies, including ISA, and are designed to maximize visibility of other road users. Technology and design can save lives.”
“The Active Intelligent Speed Assistance (ISA) tech pilot program will continue efforts to strengthen Vision Zero and make our streets safer. It will improve the driving of the city fleet, comply with speed limits, and prevent hard braking that damages vehicles, said New York State Senator Roxanne J. Persaud. “I applaud Mayors Adams’ street safety public awareness campaign. We must continue to work to improve the safety of our streets.”
“Making progress towards Vision Zero in New York City means making sure all drivers have the knowledge, incentive, and tools they need to drive safely — no matter who they are, or where they are going,” said New York State Senator Andrew Gounardes. “Equipping city vehicles with groundbreaking intelligent speed assistance technology is an innovative step forward towards making our city's streets safer, and I look forward to continuing to partner with Commissioner Rodriguez and Mayor Adams to decrease traffic violence further, however we can.”
“It is time to end speeding in our city. Mayor Adams has confronted the issue head-on, increasing enforcement and redesigning streets. Now he is taking the next step, utilizing intelligent speed assistance technology in our city fleet,” said New York State Assemblymember Jenifer Rajkumar. “As the mayor implements ISA fleetwide, makes safety upgrades, increases training, and improves tracking, we are cultivating the safest drivers in history, transforming road safety in our city. The technology he deployed in city vehicles resulted in compliance with speed limits almost 100% of the time, setting a good example for all drivers. As Mayor Adams’ traffic safety record grows, he is on track to become the mayor who ends speeding in New York City.”
“Speed is the single most important factor in determining the likelihood and severity of a crash,” said Comptroller Brad Lander. “The initial results of DCAS' pilot demonstrate that ISA can work to slow down vehicles and enhance street safety. We applaud City Hall and DCAS' leadership in deploying this important technology and look forward to its broader rollout.”
“The city’s use of active intelligent speed assistance technology is an innovative way to achieve safer streets while fostering accountability among the public employees who use city vehicles,” said Queens Borough President Donovan Richards Jr. “I am encouraged by the city’s overall effort to make its vehicle fleet safer for those who use those vehicles and for all who travel on our city’s streets. All motorists, including public employees, have an obligation to drive safely, and I am glad the Adams administration is taking an active role to promote safe driving.”
“Our city vehicles must be modeling safe, responsible driving: whether it’s leading the way with electric vehicles or piloting the ISA program to reduce speeding and hard braking,” said Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso. “Thank you to DCAS Commissioner Pinnock and Mayor Adams for partnering in pursuit of safer streets.”
“Today’s announcement is an innovative approach to making New York City Streets safer,” said New York City Council Majority Whip Selvena N. Brooks-Powers, chair, Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure. “I applaud the Administration for honoring its commitment to street safety and integrating this innovative tool into fleet vehicles, which will help protect residents, visitors, and employees of the city.”
“This is great news for public safety and the city budget. Injuries and damage caused by city vehicles cost taxpayers more than $100 million per year in legal settlements, and pedestrian fatalities are reaching pre-Vision Zero highs,” said New York City Councilmember Gale Brewer. “A federally funded initiative that protects New Yorkers and reduces legal bills is a big win.”
“As the Councilmember representing the Manhattan precinct with the highest amount of vehicular accidents, investing in safe driving technology is essential for reducing traffic violence,” said New York City Councilmember Julie Menin. “Should the city secure additional federal grant funding, our streets will be safer by utilizing intelligent speed assistance (ISA) technology to prevent unsafe driving. I thank New York City Mayor Eric Adams and New York City Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS) Commissioner Dawn M. Pinnock for working with the U.S Department of Transportation as part of Vision Zero.”
“Together for Safer Roads would like to applaud the city of New York, Mayor Eric Adams, DCAS Commissioner Dawn Pinnock, and DCAS Deputy Commissioner Keith Kerman for their work on bringing new technologies to the city’s fleet to make our roads safer and to save lives,” said Peter Goldwasser, executive director, Together for Safer Roads. “This past September TSR honored the mayor at our annual conference for his commitment to Vision Zero and today’s announcement is another strong example of this administration's work. We know that speeding is a major cause of road fatalities and that addressing this issue systematically requires a variety of interventions including lowering speed limits and automated enforcement tools like ISA. We look forward to continuing our work with DCAS and the city to achieve the goals of Vision Zero.”
“Lower speeds save lives. The results from DCAS’s intelligent speed assistance pilot shows this technology works to reduce dangerous driving and keep New Yorkers safe,” said Danny Harris, executive director, Transportation Alternatives. “We urge the city to expand the use of intelligent speed assistance to the entire city fleet and set a model for cities and states across the country.”
Through the Safe Fleet Transition Plan, DCAS is specifying the highest level of safety available on new cars and trucks and implementing safety retrofits. DCAS has already installed over 72,000 safety improvements to city fleet units, including driver alert systems, telematics, truck side-guards, automatic braking, back-up alerts, dash cams, and heated mirrors.
In addition to the Safe Fleet Transition Plan, DCAS has implemented a wide variety of safety measures as part of Vision Zero. Other measures include the city’s first fleet CRASH management system — a module used to report collisions by fleet operators; the nation’s largest rollout of live vehicle tracking devices managed through the Fleet Office of Real Time Tracking; the nation’s leading program of truck safety guards; and barring hands-free phone use by fleet operators; and providing safety training to over 76,000 city employees.