EghtesadOnline: To help reduce road mishaps and fatality rates, Traffic Police is to install a smart monitoring system called ‘Sepahtan’ on intercity taxis in the current fiscal year (started March 21).
Sepahtan is an online monitoring system that keeps drivers on alert and discourages them from violating the law. The monitoring system tracks the route a cab takes, its speed and the duration a driver is behind the wheel.
Speaking to ILNA, the national Traffic Police Chief General Kamal Hadianfar said installation of the system on all intercity cabs is on the agenda for this year.
Jointly designed and produced by three Iranian knowledge-based firms, namely Rahnegar Hushmand, Radshid, and Hushmand Namaye Afzar, the system is in use in all intercity buses since the spring of last year. Large numbers of Iranians use intercity public road transport throughout the year, according to Financial Tribune.
The system has helped reduce traffic violations and subsequently bus accidents in the country.
Families travel during the Norouz (Persian New Year) from March 21-April 2 holiday season. For two weeks most highways are clogged with cars and buses and usually many road mishaps and fatalities are reported.
However, for the first time in decades, zero bus crashes resulting in death were reported during the last Norouz (March 21- April 2, 2018), the former Traffic Police Chief Mohammad Hossein Hamidi said.
Authorities attribute at least a part of the improvement to the Sepahtan monitoring systems on the intercity buses.
To further improve the results, in addition to cabs, Traffic Police is planning to equip commercial vehicles, such as tanker trucks transporting flammable cargo, with the smart system.
Before Sepahtan was launched, another system was employed for monitoring intercity buses. The drivers’ behavior including the time they sat behind the wheel was recorded by an offline system. Furthermore, the system recorded whether the drivers had exceeded the speed limit.
According to Hadianfar, employing the old system was time consuming and drivers had devised methods for tampering with the results while Sepahtan sends live reports to the traffic police.
According to the Ministry of Roads, 400,000 commercial vehicles and 40,000 intercity taxis operate in the country.
How Sepahtan Works
The monitoring system includes a camera, a satellite navigation device and a speed calculation system. After getting behind the wheel the driver is required to insert his driving license card into a slot in the device next to the wheel.
Using the card’s chipset, the device loads the driver’s information and automatically syncs the system with his record.
The system has an electronic logging device which automatically records the time a driver is behind the wheel. This control is for Hours of Service Regulation which limits the number of daily and weekly hours of driving and regulates the minimum amount of time drivers must rest between driving shifts.
Drivers are allowed a 9-hour work window a day and must take a 10-minute break after driving for four hours.
The device also includes a GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System), which monitors vehicle speed and alerts the police during violations.
Restrictions on driving time help reduce fatigue behind the wheel and contribute to the safety of the passengers.