In 2021, the City of Loveland will continue its plan to outfit traffic signals with GPS technology to improve the response time of its fire and emergency vehicles and reduce intersection accidents.
GPS preemption, or anticipation, units are being installed in traffic signal control boxes, allowing for approaching emergency vehicles to interrupt the signal and receive a green light. The units detect oncoming emergency vehicles through the installation of in-vehicle units.
“Given the success of the units and the evidence of their reduction in both response times and intersection crashes, the city expanded the program into a four-year plan,” explained David Kennedy, Loveland City Manager.
Over the past two years, the city has installed five units: West Loveland and Karl Brown; West Loveland and Second Street; Second Street at Five Points; West Loveland Avenue and Loveland Madeira Road; and State Route 48 and Loveland-Miamiville Road.
In 2021, the city has budgeted for the installation of units at the following locations: Lebanon Road and Pheasant Hills; Lebanon Road and West Loveland Avenue; Loveland Madeira Road and Highridge Drive; and West Loveland Avenue and Rich Road.
As for the in-vehicle equipment, three vehicles from Station 63 in Downtown Loveland are currently equipped to use the GPS technology. The 2021 budget includes outfitting three vehicles stationed at the Loveland Safety Center. Then, in 2022, the city will begin installing kits into police vehicles, and the kits will be included as standard equipment going forward.
“Traffic preemption is the most cost-effective investment a community can make that improves response times, while safeguarding the motoring public and the safety of our firefighters,” said Chief Otto Huber of the Loveland-Symmes Fire Department.
The GPS technology is developed by Opticom, a partner of Global Traffic Technologies, and installed by Capital Electric. Loveland City Council approved the city’s total 2021 project cost of $44,856.