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Want to make your city safer? Map accidents that never happened

There’s an ambitious transportation goal that Canada, Netherlands, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United States have set for themselves: Vision Zero. The project aims to ensure that mistakes on roadways don’t result in any serious injuries or death. A new partnership between Intel-owned Mobileye and Esri wants to make that vision a reality.

Mobileye has an intelligent blind spot detection system, Shield+, which uses multi-vision smart sensors to alert the drivers of heavy goods vehicles (HGV) about the presence of pedestrians or cyclists in danger zones. What Esri plans to do is bring the real-time data collected by Shield+ into a map and analyze it for trends or patterns. When municipalities and transit authorities have a city-wide view of pedestrian and cyclist safety, they can easily send out alerts to bus or other HGV drivers about imminent hazards seconds before a potential collision.

Essentially, Shield+ sends out four different kinds of warnings to drivers:

Forward Collision Warning: Alerts when a collision is imminent with a car, truck, or motorcycle ahead of the vehicle

Pedestrian and Cyclist Collision Warning: Alerts when a collision is imminent with a pedestrian or cyclist within the vehicle’s front danger zones

Lane Departure Warning: Alerts when a lane deviation occurs without proper signal notification

Headway Monitoring and Warning: Alerts when the following distance from the vehicle ahead becomes unsafe.

Explaining that municipalities entering into new contracts with Mobileye will be given an option to try out this new system, Nisso Moyal, the director of business development and big data at Mobileye, says, “By enabling direct uploading of geospatial events from Shield+ fitted to municipal buses and the like to the Mobileye Smart Mobility Dashboard, cities will be able to anticipate and help prevent the next collision, while in general managing all of their assets much more efficiently.”

With cities pushing for a culture that prioritizes traffic safety, city planners are increasingly looking for smart transportation solutions. This new collaboration between Mobileye and Esri looks like a step in the right direction.

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Your hobby drone needs to be registered in United States. Again.

The on-again, off-again relationship between the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and drone enthusiasts in the United States has finally been cemented by a new bill Trump administration signed into law this week. The National Defense Authorization Act for 2018 requires every hobby drone to be registered with the FAA.

Back in 2015, the FAA had mandated all hobbyists to pay a $5 registration fee and enroll their drones in the national database. But in May 2017, an appeals court struck down that rule, saying that FAA isn’t authorized to pass any regulations regarding the operations of a non-commercial model aircraft. So, the FAA said: Fine, fill out a form and mail it to us, and we will delete your record from our registry and refund your $5. And many people did that.

Now, the new law again requires all civilian drone operators to register their machines with the aviation authority, if they want to stay legal. Welcoming the reinstatement, the FAA, in a statement to TechCrunch, said, “Ownership identification helps promote safe and responsible drone operation and is a key component to full integration.”

Many industry players, including Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) and drone giant DJI, had expressed their disappointment when the appeals court gave the boot to the FAA mandate. Asserting that reinstating the registration law will ensure safety and accountability in the US airspace, drone lobby group Small UAV Coalition said in a statement, “With registration reinstated, the Coalition looks forward to working with the FAA and Congress to implement remote identification and tracking standards that will be critical to ensuring safe integration and unleashing the potential for increased and expanded commercial UAS operations.”

Click here to see the full list of FAA’s rules for operating drones in the United States. And if you find an unmanned aerial vehicle under your Christmas tree this year, don’t forget to register it before taking it out for a whirl!

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