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GPS-based traffic system garners award for city

The City of Burnaby received an award recently for its emergency vehicle traffic signal pre-emption system, according to Karen Leach, a communications consultant with the city.

The City of Burnaby received an award recently for its emergency vehicle traffic signal pre-emption system, according to Karen Leach, a communications consultant with the city.

The system, introduced last year on Hastings Street and Kingsway, and completed throughout the city earlier this year, allows emergency response vehicles to request priority green lights at upcoming intersections, to improve response time.

Intelligent Transportation Systems Canada - a non-profit organization based in Ontario - presented its project award in the smaller municipal category to Burnaby at its annual conference on June 14.

All of Burnaby's 230 traffic signals and more than 100 police and fire vehicles are now equipped with this GPS-based system, Leach said.

"When responding to an emergency, transponder equipment mounted on police and fire vehicles allows the vehicles to request a priority green light," she explained.

The Central Management Software allows technicians to remotely access system settings, monitor activity and produce reports, she added.

"Our traffic signal pre-emption system enhances safety and improves response times for fire and police personnel who are responding to emergency calls, benefiting all Burnaby citizens and police and fire emergency responders," said Coun. Sav Dhaliwal, chair of the city's traffic safety committee.

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