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Priority Management of Emergency Vehicles at Intersections Using Self-organized Traffic Control

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journal contribution
posted on 01.09.2012, 00:00 authored by Wantanee Viriyasitavat, Ozan K. Tonguz

Biologically inspired approaches have the potential to solve many of the difficult networking problems awaiting practical solutions. The recently proposed Virtual Traffic Lights (VTL) is one example (or instance) of this powerful approach for solving some fundamental transportation problems[1], [2]. The successful operation of VTL scheme ultimately depends on the local rules used by vehiclesapproaching an intersection for electing a leader that manages the traffic at that intersection by serving as a virtual traffic light. In this paper, it is shown that by using a different set of local rules atintersections, one can support priority management of emergency vehicles in a self-organized manner. The proposed VTL-Priority Intersection Control (VTL-PIC) protocol can detect the presence of anemergency vehicle and assign priority to the emergency vehicle at an intersection. Large-scale simulation results show that while the travel time of emergency vehicles can be reduced significantly, the impact of the proposed algorithm on the travel time of other vehicles is negligible.


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