Sunderland deploys weather sensors to inform road planning

Sunderland City Council has installed ten infra-red (IR) temperature sensors in roads around the city to provide detailed weather forecast data to its transport teams.

Data collected from the sensors  -  which includes road surface temperatures, air temperatures and dew point temperatures - is being combined with information from Sunderland’s existing forecasting stations to produce real-time analysis of road conditions.

The sensors are connected to one of the council’s new wireless networks designed for transmitting low volume data over a wide area, provided under its partnership with BAI Communications. 

The sensors allow for a greater understanding of Sunderland’s priority and secondary road networks - especially during extreme weather - and enable the transport teams to carry out more effective road gritting, monitoring and planning. 

Liz St Louis, the council’s director of smart cities, said: “Keeping the city moving, whilst prioritising the safety of our residents is our core aim. We know that cold or more severe weather can cause disruption and safety concerns, but we are better equipped than ever before to utilise digital technology to support the planning and implementation of solutions

“The smart road temperature sensors are another example of the strides we are taking to digitally transform Sunderland for the benefit of all who live, work, play and invest here.”

The data gathered by the sensors will allow the Council to continue making roads more accessible, safe and clear for its citizens.  

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