Luc Bontemps (Febiac): ‘Use big data to enhance traffic safety’
Luc Bontemps, CEO of Febiac, the Belgian federation of cars and two-wheelers, wants to enhance traffic safety by using personal data cars are already storing today. In a column he expresses his thoughts.
In 2017 the death toll due to traffic accidents decreased by 13% in Belgium and finds itself at a historic low. But we still can do better if we compare with our neighbours. We can do that by law enforcement, better and more controls… but we have to look further ahead.
In 2018 we have artificial intelligence and an incredible amount of data at our disposal. Let’s use it. All the new cars have sensors and computers recording data about the cars own behaviour and also about the cars around it. We can use these data to make traffic safer.
Detect danger zones
By reading and interpreting these data we can detect where cars have to brake for example or where they are polluting more. Then we know where the so-called ‘black points’ are situated and how we can react appropriately, changing infrastructure, increase controls, even warn drivers of the possible danger ahead.
With these data we can also help drivers to become better road users. Even if the car is the greenest on the market, the driver can still abuse it and have a very bad ecological score. With interpreting data we can inform drivers about their driving skills, habits and mistakes.
At a moment where Facebook is being reprimanded by the Privacy Commission about the use of data, this proposal may seem controversial. But if we use data in a transparent way, with the utmost respect for privacy, they offer unknown possibilities. So let’s all be creative about the use of data, with their help we are able to achieve the ultimate goal: no deaths in traffic anymore.