What if your car could not only tell you how fast you were allowed to drive but actively help you to avoid speeding in the first place? In countries all over the world, speeding is one of the leading causes of severe road accidents and one of the biggest reasons why people die in road accidents.
In order to reduce speeding and improve vehicle and passenger safety, the European Transport Safety Council has identified Intelligent Speed Assistance (ISA) as one of the most critical new safety measures and predicts that its mass adoption can reduce serious road accidents by up to 30% and fatalities by up to 20%.
Safety protocols have been top of mind for the European Commission's Transport Council, which has set the goal of reducing road deaths to almost zero by 2050. As a part of this, the EU voted to improve driver safety by enacting the General Safety Regulation (GSR) 2019/2144 which requires all new vehicle types as of July 6, 2022, and any newly produced vehicles from July 7, 2024, to be equipped with ISA technology.
What Is Intelligent Speed Assistance?
Intelligent Speed Assistance, also known as ISA, is a speed limit data system that tracks vehicle speed, monitors posted speed limits, and notifies drivers with audio and visual cues when they’re going too fast. This technology can also limit the speed of a vehicle with haptic feedback and reduced engine power.
How Does Intelligent Speed Assistance Work?
Intelligent Speed Assistance works in two main phases:
- Identifying the speed limit.
- Reducing vehicle speed.
Identifying the Speed Limit
ISA determines the speed limit with two main data streams. One via GPS, which locates the vehicles and transmits the relevant speed limit from a mapping databank. The other is via the onboard cameras, which scan oncoming road signs for posted speed limits. If there is a disagreement between the mapping data and the speed limit road sign data, ISA will prefer the road sign data to determine the legal limit.
Reducing Vehicle Speed
Intelligent Speed Adaptation uses several systems to reduce vehicle speed. Here are four of the most common:
- Cascaded acoustic warning - Provides a delayed acoustic warning
- Cascaded vibrating warning - Provides a delayed vibrating warning
- Haptic feedback (gas pedal) - Pushes the driver's foot away from the pedal
- Speed control function - Gradually reduces engine power
You might think ISA will automatically hit the brakes, shake up the driver, and cause a disturbance, but this is not the case.
The recommended ISA system will display a visual warning to the driver when they encounter a lower speed limit. It is then the driver’s responsibility to reduce their speed appropriately. If the driver does not apply the brakes, the vehicle will naturally slow down to the new speed limit by reducing engine power– the equivalent of the driver lifting their foot off the accelerator.
What are the EU’s New Requirements Beyond ISA?
In the European Union’s 2019 General Vehicle Safety regulation, ISA is one of a few new mandatory features for all vehicles produced after 6 July 2022. To comply with all regulations, vehicles must be equipped with the following:
- Intelligent speed assistance
- Emergency stop signals
- Driver distraction warnings
- Driver drowsiness alert systems
- Alcohol interlock installation facilitation
- Tire pressure monitoring
- Reversing detection
- Event data recorders
Along with the must-have features for all motor vehicles after mid-2022, the new directive has the following ISA specifications:
- The ISA system must turn on every time the car starts
- The driver is able to switch off the ISA system
- The driver must be aware of whether the ISA system is on or off
- The system will not prohibit the driver from exceeding the speed limit
- The driver must be audibly notified if they have exceeded the appropriate speed limit
Unlike other existing vehicle regulations, new cars bought in previous years do not have to be recalled by the automaker and have an ISA system installed.
Will Automakers Be Checked To Ensure Compliance?
The testing for ISA technologies will go through what is known as type approval–the rigorous testing procedure that manufacturers need to pass in order to sell their cars in the EU.
Type approval, or certificate of conformity, is applied by national authorities and certifies that a model of a vehicle meets all EU safety, environmental, and conformity of production requirements before being placed on the market.
This is a well-established approval process and for ISA, manufacturers will have to make sure that the car can correctly identify 90% of the speed limits along a 400-500 km test route which will be a mix of motorways, highways, and urban roads.
How Can Mapbox Help Comply With Requirements?
Mapbox can help drivers and car manufacturers comply with the new General Vehicle Safety regulations regarding ISA through real-time navigation data.
What’s in the box with the ADAS SDK:
- Daily updated speed limit layer, including conditional and implicit speed limit data
- Powerful cloud API serving map tiles to the end-user
- Modular on-board software that delivers out-of-the-box data management, map matching, and Electronic Horizon capabilities. Offline and online map options are supported with a seamless transition between the two.
- ADASISv2 output that can be directly fed into CAN bus.
Want an ISA Upgrade? Consider Mapbox
ISA and other speed regulations are a growing trend–becoming the gold standard for automotive safety. The requirements for increased and updated data coverage will become more strict over time, creating the need for an end-to-end solution that provides ADAS functionality. The Mapbox data engine is uniquely positioned to meet existing and future regulations and provide the data foundation for building delightful customer experiences.
Learn more about Mapbox ADAS SDK today.