OnStar Visit by Regional Transportation Operations Planning


Date: May 23, 2013
Time: 8:30 AM
Meeting Held: GM OnStar, Detroit, MI

Dayo Akinyemi MDOT – SEMTOC
Tom Bruff ………… SEMCOG…… .
Craig Shackelford…… Bloomfield Twp. Police
Phil Wagner…………….. Westshore Fire
Richard Beaubien Beaubien Engineering

GM OnStar Tour

At the January Coordinating Committee meeting George Baker from GM OnStar provided a summary of the technologies available to assist first responders. He invited our group to hold a future meeting at the OnStar headquarters in Detroit. On May 23 Planning Committee members joined with the 2013 ITS World Congress Technology Showcase committee for a tour of the OnStar Command Center.

In most crashes, built in sensors in the vehicle can automatically send an alert on OnStar. A live advisor is immediately connected into the vehicle to see if the occupants are okay. Injury severity prediction helps to predict if there is a high probability of severe injury. Even if the occupants are hurt and cannot respond, an advisor can request emergency help be sent to the vehicle location using GPS technology. The advisor can relay critical crash data to emergency dispatchers and help determine the appropriate resources to send to the scene. The advisor stays on the line with occupants until emergency help arrives at the scene. A certified EMD advisor provides MPDS protocol instructions to occupants in the critical first minutes after a crash. The advisor can send a remote signal to sound the horn and flash the lights in order to locate the vehicle. To provide this service, the vehicle must have battery power, cellular connectivity, and an active subscription.

The automatic crash response algorithm records location, vehicle information, VIN, whether the air bag was deployed, maximum change in velocity, direction of impact, whether there were multiple impacts, and whether there was a rollover. An urgency algorithm indicates whether there is a high probability of injury. Emergency medical dispatch provides step by step advice. OnStar public safety information is available via email at [email protected] or by telephone at 866-866-5006. The website is

Review of Meeting Agenda for the Southeast Michigan Regional Transportation Operations Coordinating Committee Meeting
The July 12, 2013 Regional Transportation Operations Coordinating Committee meeting will be held at the new Southeast Michigan Transportation Operations Center (SEMTOC), 1060 West Fort Street, , Detroit, Michigan 48226. Potential topics include a presentation on 2014 ITS World Congress in Detroit, best practices for towing and recovery traffic planning for the Detroit Auto Show, Lifesavers Conference Highlights, and a review of statewide traffic incident management activities. It will also include a review of freeway operations issues.

Arterial Traffic Management
We should encourage this group to meet regularly, and MDOT’s Eric Mueller could lead this group. Washtenaw County’s Brent Schlack could be a Co-Chair. They should start with a high level brain storming session and then prioritize the list of ideas and develop a plan and schedule for addressing them. Some things to consider are connectivity of the Traffic Operations Centers, integrated corridor management, data collection, software, hardware, timing across systems (MDOT and locals, cycle lengths), priority corridors (congestion, freight, volumes, transit), policies (signal priority, pre-emption, EMS, buses). This group may be interested in the Connected Vehicle training available from ITS America.

Hold Harmless Legislation
MDOT has prepared a “white paper” to explain the need for this legislation and what other states have done in this area. This white paper has been approved, and MDOT is drafting a bill to be considered by the legislature. The draft bill will be reviewed by the Towing Association. MDOT is identifying a sponsor for the legislation.