IIT Madras recently announced a partnership with the Government of Rajasthan to implement a structured framework for a data-driven systems approach to road safety. A Memorandum of Understanding for this collaboration was signed recently between the Rajasthan Government represented by Ravi Jain, transport commissioner, and the Indian Institute of Technology Madras by Prof Ravindra Gettu, Dean (industrial consultancy and sponsored research).
The key objective of this collaboration is to enhance road safety measures, increase capacity and capability across the board in the Government to both increase the survivability of road accident victims and reduce occurrence rate in the State, said a statement from the institute.
Key outcomes targeted from the IIT Madras and Rajasthan Government collaboration
- Building capability of the core road safety team in Rajasthan.
- Help build strategies and implementation work packages for all stakeholder departments to realize safe roads in the State of Rajasthan.
- Develop a road map towards reaching the SDG goal of 50% reduction in road fatalities by 2030 and eventually to zero deaths from road traffic accidents.
- Help build data-driven trauma care with an institutional registry developed by IIT Madras.
Prof Ravindra Gettu said, “This MoU will foster a collaborative partnership wherein IIT Madras will be building the capability of various stakeholders in Government of Rajasthan and help them design and implement a successful road safety program.”
This collaboration will involve various stakeholder Departments in the Government of Rajasthan involved in road safety including the Public Works Department (PWD), National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), police, health and medical services, among other agencies.
Prof Venkatesh Balasubramanian, faculty in-charge, rehabilitation bioengineering group (RBG) labs, department of engineering design, IIT Madras, who is coordinating this initiative, said: “Roads are shared asset and the safety on them is a collective responsibility of all the stakeholders. However, without having an overt and specific responsibility, it can be easily lost between the gaps. Therefore, it is quintessential to develop a good strategy based on data. It is, therefore, necessary to have a design thinking approach to solve the problem by not just identifying the issues but implementing changes that are sustainable in the local conditions.”
Some of the other key projects on road safety taken by RBG Labs at IIT Madras
- Working with National Health Mission Tamil Nadu, helped build a unique Trauma Care program, TAEI (Tamil Nadu Accident and Emergency care Initiative). RBG Labs had advised in designing and implementing this unique trauma care program that uses principles of lean manufacturing.
- Working with the Tamil Nadu Police, helped improve the data collection process of road traffic accidents called RADMS (Road Accident Database Management System). The resultant application TARA (Traffic Accident Reporting App) was geared to have an integrated approach to accident data collection.
- MoRTH adopted this integrated approach for data collection where in-depth data can be simultaneously collected from various domain specialist agencies called iRAD (Integrated Road Accident Database). RBG Labs, IIT Madras and NICSI are currently in the process of developing and implementing nationally.
- Based on a technology transfer from RBG Labs, IIT Madras to M/s Harita Seating Systems Limited, an IoT based ubiquitous monitoring of driver presence, performance and behaviour monitoring system called the Harita Intelliseaa was launched in 2017 and won the auto-component of the year in 2018.
The Rehabilitation Bioengineering Group is an interdisciplinary group with competencies in Human Factors and Transportation, Innovation and Lean Operations, Medical Devices and Implants.