• Ford is exploring how choregraphing connected cars at junctions could one day enable drivers and passengers to enjoy free-flowing traffic and avoid the stress of stop-start driving
  • Taking inspiration from how pedestrians adjust their speed to avoid those crossing their path, the company is already testing technology that could advise drivers to slow down or accelerate to avoid a collision with vehicles approaching from other directions
  • Ford trials Intersection Priority Management, enabled by vehicle-to-vehicle communications, as part of UK Autodrive testing; demonstrates further tech that could help prevent accidents, reduce emergency vehicle response time



COLOGNE, Germany, Oct. 10, 2018 – Imagine a world where negotiating busy junctions does not require you to wait at a red light and the only reason to stop your car is because you have arrived at your destination.

Ford is trialling a new way in which connected car technology could set us on that journey – and that takes its lead from how humans negotiate their way through busy crowds, by slowing down or speeding up to avoid collisions, without coming to a standstill.

Intersection Priority Management (IPM) – being demonstrated this week on the streets of Milton Keynes, U.K., as part of the government-funded UK Autodrive programme – aims to keep drivers driving and bring an end to unnecessary stops at junctions, both easing traffic flow and increasing safety and efficiency.

“We know that intersections and traffic lights can be a real bugbear for many drivers,” said Christian Ress, supervisor, Driver Assist Technologies, Ford Research and Advanced Engineering. “With the connected car technology we have been demonstrating this week, we envisage a world where vehicles are more aware of each other and their environment, enabling intelligent cooperation and collaboration on the roads – and around junctions.”

Every year, the average driver spends two days waiting at traffic lights. And not only can junctions be frustrating – they are also the cause of up to 60 per cent of road traffic accidents. As well as saving time, avoiding stopping at junctions could also save fuel, as drivers avoid braking and accelerating away from the lights.

IPM uses vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communications to coordinate with other vehicles in the vicinity and suggests optimum speeds that will allow cars to safely pass by each other at intersections without coming to a halt.

For the trial, test cars have been equipped with V2V communication systems that broadcast the vehicles’ location, direction of travel and speed. The onboard IPM systems are able to identify an upcoming junction and the trajectory of other vehicles approaching it. It will then suggest an optimum speed for each vehicle as they approach the junction that will allow them pass through safely.

The vehicles in the trial have people behind the wheel, but it is envisaged that autonomous vehicles could also benefit from the technology. Automating how vehicles negotiate junctions with each other in this way that may mean that, one day, vehicles could pass through safely and efficiently without the need for traffic lights or road signs. While today’s autonomous vehicles operate independently using the sensor technologies and map data on board, V2V and vehicle-to-everything (V2X) communications technologies could benefit the driverless cars of the future.

IPM builds upon other connected-car technologies developed by Ford and its project partners as part of UK Autodrive, a £20 million programme taking self-driving and connected car technologies from the test track to the streets.

Among the technologies showcased during the two-year programme – which comes to an end this week – are Intersection Collision Warning, which alerts drivers of potential accidents when approaching an intersection, and Green Light Optimal Speed Advisory (GLOSA), which helps cars to synchronise with nearby traffic lights to help them avoid getting stuck on red.

Other features demonstrated include Collaborative Parking – which builds a crowd-sourced map of a car park’s available spaces – and Emergency Vehicle Warning, where drivers are advised of the location and distance of an approaching emergency vehicle.

Revealed: how long you really spend waiting at traffic lights

New research suggests British motorists spend a fifth of their average daily drive waiting at red lights
Sometimes it can feel like you spend half your life sitting at red lights, and while things aren’t quite that bad yet, new research shows that the average Briton does spend more than two days a year waiting for the traffic lights to turn green.

The research, which was conducted by the comparison website, also discovered that for British motorists who drive every day, a fifth of their time in a car is spent waiting at red lights.

Traffic lights cause more harm than good​

Perhaps this isn’t surprising given the recent growth in the number of traffic lights on UK roads; British drivers now face 33,800 sets of them, a 23 per cent increase since 2013.

The resulting frustration has persuaded many Britons to take matters into their own hands, with nearly three in 10 people (29 per cent) admitting they have driven through a red light and nearly a third of those (32 per cent) doing so deliberately.

Reasons for driving through a red light vary, with a third saying they were running late and a similar number claiming they didn’t see the light turn red. Meanwhile, a fifth say they deliberately drove through a red light because they were angry at the light for turning red.

However, it’s not all bad news, with many motorists using the time they spend sitting stationary to do other things. The most common activity while stopped at a red is adjusting the stereo (59 per cent), while more than a third of people (38 per cent) adjust the air-con and a similar number (36 per cent) eat a snack.

How long do points stay on your driving licence?

Commenting on the findings, Matt Lloyd of said: “Red lights are a frustration for many drivers on the road but they are a necessity to keep traffic moving in a timely and orderly fashion.

Red light offenders

  • 29% admit to driving through a red light
  • 32% of those say they did so deliberately

“On some days, it can seem like the lights are against you and it can feel like the wait is longer than normal, but rushing through a red light can cause problems for drivers and pedestrians alike. And getting caught can cause you problems with your insurance.”



  • New Ford tech advises drivers of location, distance of approaching emergency vehicle
  • Could help police cars, ambulances, fire engines reach destinations more quickly
  • Tech is among systems the company is showcasing at UK Autodrive trials
  • Further new tech alerts drivers at crossroads when unseen vehicles have run a red light

COVENTRY, UK/AACHEN, Germany, June 22, 2017 – Trying to locate the source of a siren when you are behind the wheel can be stressful. Worse, it can delay the progress of an emergency vehicle if you do not quickly and safely move out of the way.

Now Ford has developed technology that sends a signal from the ambulance, fire engine or police car directly to nearby drivers, so that they will know exactly where the siren is coming from, and how far away it is.

In the U.K. alone, in 2015, there were 475 road accidents involving emergency services vehicles. * And it is thought the technology – that provides to the driver audible and visual alerts in the instrument cluster– could one day even advise drivers on the best course of action to safely get out of the way.

“Time is precious for emergency services and this technology could help to shave valuable seconds off their journeys by enabling drivers to avoid being an obstruction,” said Christian Ress, supervisor, Automated Driving Europe, Ford Research and Advanced Engineering.

Ford will this week demonstrate its Emergency Vehicle Warning technology at the UK Autodrive event, a £20 million government-sponsored trial of connected cars supported by 16 technology and automotive businesses, local authorities and academic institutions.

“West Midlands Fire Service has a pledge to attend serious incidents within five minutes.  Connected technologies like these, that help to improve communications between vehicles, could help us get to people even more quickly when they really need us,” said Peter Allington, Road Casualty Reduction Team at West Midlands Fire Service.

Ford is also trialling technology that can alert drivers to potential accidents when they are approaching a crossroads. With Intersection Collision Warning, the car broadcasts its location to nearby vehicles which – if equipped with the same technology – then calculate the risk of a crash. If the risk is high then a warning tells both drivers to slow down or stop. For example, it could alert drivers when a car approaching from another direction has ignored a red traffic light.

Previously, as part of the trials, Ford showcased systems that warn when cars ahead, which may be hidden by a bend in the road, brake hard; as well as technology that  shows how cars can synchronise with traffic lights to “ride the green wave”, improving journeys through urban areas. Trials of all four technologies are ongoing in the Coventry and Milton Keynes areas until end of 2018 when UK Autodrive will be finalised.

Safety tips
The emergency services have the following safety tips for drivers when they hear an emergency vehicle siren: **

  • Keep calm, look and listen. If you hear a siren, assume an emergency vehicle is coming your way and give yourself time to plan
  • Turn off the music in your car so you can hear the siren
  • Look for somewhere safe to pull over and stop. Use your indicators to show you’re pulling over and avoid confusion with other road users
  • Make sure you leave enough space for the vehicle to pass. Be aware there may be more than one emergency vehicle in the convoy
  • Stay safe, stay legal. Don’t go through a red light or enter a bus lane unless directed by a uniformed police officer



  • Hitting a series of red lights on a miserable commute could become a thing of the past with the help of technology that is now being trialled with Ford cars
  • Drivers choose recommended speed to maximise chance of meeting green lights based on timing info from roadside units. UK daily drivers spend two days per year waiting at red lights
  • Ford cars also trial tech that warns when cars unseen up ahead brake hard to show benefits of connected cars for UK’s largest self‑driving and connected car trial

Imagine if you could take the kids to school, commute to work or drive across town to do some shopping without ever hitting a single red traffic light.

21-OCT-2016, COLOGNE, GERMANY – Technology is currently being trialled with Ford cars to make “riding the green wave” a day-to-day reality. Green Light Optimal Speed Advisory uses information on traffic light timings from a roadside unit to display to the driver the best speed to travel to get a green light.

Ford is trialling the technology as it helps to demonstrate the benefits of connected cars for UK Autodrive – the nation’s largest self-driving and connected car trial. The 16-member, partly publicly funded £20 million project is developing and trialling vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle‑to‑infrastructure technologies that could make driving less stressful and time-consuming, and improve fuel efficiency.

“There’s not much worse after a long day than to hit one red light after another on the drive home, and be forced to stop and start again at every junction,” said Christian Ress, supervisor, Driver Assist Technologies, Ford Research and Advanced Engineering. “Enabling drivers to ‘ride the green wave’ also means a smoother, continuous journey that helps to improve the flow of traffic and provide significant reductions in carbon dioxide emissions and fuel consumption.”

Daily drivers in the UK alone spend two days each year waiting at red lights, and similar technologies already enable cyclists in Copenhagen and Amsterdam to avoid red lights. * If drivers find hitting a red light unavoidable the system displays how long until the light turns green.

The Mondeo Hybrid cars provided by Ford are also trialling Emergency Electronic Brake Lights, which warn when a vehicle up ahead suddenly brakes hard – even if the incident occurs out-of-sight – up to a distance of 500 metres.

Technologies that will be trialled next year also warn drivers when another vehicle is blocking the junction ahead; when an ambulance, police car or fire truck is approaching; and prioritises vehicles arriving at intersections without traffic signs or traffic lights.

Trials are taking place on both public roads and closed circuits in Milton Keynes and Coventry during the next two years.



The stress of searching for elusive empty bays in busy car parks may one day be a thing of the past, thanks to new “collaborative parking” technology being tested on the streets – and in the car parks – of Milton Keynes, in the U.K.

Drivers can spend, on average, more than a day each year looking for parking spaces, according to a new study commissioned by Ford – and the new technology, being tested this week, displays a “crowd-sourced” map of available spaces, specifically in formal car parks. *

“We understand how much wasted time and unnecessary stress is caused by searching for parking spaces in towns and cities,” said Christian Ress, supervisor, Automated Driving Europe, Ford Research and Advanced Engineering. “With our research into ‘collaborative parking’, we see an opportunity to hand that time back to drivers, helping them enjoy happier, healthier and more efficient journeys.”

Ford is among project partners to have developed “collaborative parking” and other vehicletoinfrastructure technologies as part of the UK Autodrive project – a £20 million government-sponsored programme taking self-driving and connected-car technologies from the test track to the streets. With parking spaces in towns and cities across Europe increasingly difficult to find, it is hoped technology like this could help. **

“Collaborative parking” is powered by data from the parking sensors of vehicles using the car park. This informs the map that shows which spaces may be free – and can also incorporate data from the car parks’ own monitoring systems. Previously, as part of UK Autodrive, Ford and partners have showcased systems that warn when emergency services vehicles need to overtake, and when cars unseen up ahead – perhaps hidden by a bend in the road – brake suddenly.

* Survey of 2,039 UK respondents between 9-12 March 2018




  • Revealed: how long you really spend waiting at traffic lights (Telegraph Media Group Limited.
  •  Junctions – Mobility and transport – European Commission
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