Can artificial intelligence prevent traffic incidents?

Three-dimensional image of the letters AI on a blue background

It remains to be seen, but Spanish scientists are hopeful

Spanish scientists have explored the connection between the complexity of certain urban areas and the likelihood of road traffic incidents, as well as the potential for preventing them with the help of artificial intelligence. The results are promising, according to researchers Cristina Bustos and Javier Borge.

Night boulevard, lights from many cars in neon colors can be seen
Photo: Unsplash

Their team is working on algorithms that can be used to train neural networks to detect potential hazards in different areas. They are also developing models related to the potentially high risk of road incidents to assist transportation authorities.

A footpath in Japan with the country's typical diagonal crossing arrangement. Lots of pedestrians crossing
Photo: Unsplash

The visual design of what they call the ‘urban scene’ influences the likelihood of incidents, with key factors being the location of street objects, parked cars, distracting advertisements on facades, and other potentially hazardous objects that could divert the driver’s attention.


Lots of cars waiting at the traffic light in New York.
Photo: Unsplash

The scientists are using specific machine learning to identify patterns in images or video clips. According to them, artificial intelligence can be a powerful tool for pre-determining possible high-risk areas where incidents might occur. This, in turn, will enable more accurate and safer urban planning.

A man's hand is holding a steering wheel of a car. Traffic on the road is visible through the windshield.
Photo: Unsplash


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