Jul 04, 2019 - Smart Lighting: How Tech Is Putting Safety First

From smartphones to smart homes, it seems like everything is becoming smart. What exactly does that mean? Everyday objects can do a list of functions we didn’t think possible a mere decade ago. Cars can drive themselves, phones can do a lot more than just make calls, and we can control nearly every function in our home by simply stating a command. With everything going smart, it’s no surprise that our industry has begun making the shift. Smart street lighting is becoming more and more prevalent. Lighting poles are making the shift to smart and aside from just how cool it sounds, they actually pose a number of benefits for pedestrians and motorists alike. 



Why should a city invest in smart lighting systems?


There is no denying that visibly is essential for motorists, cyclists and pedestrians. In fact, the majority of motor vehicle accidents occur at night, when visibility is at its lowest. Although main roads, highways, and some side roads are equipped with street lighting, they can only act in one function, lighting objects and persons in a one-dimensional manner. In some cases. A sidewalk may be well lit, however, someone simply standing in the wrong place, away from lighting could pose danger should a vehicle veer in their direction.


Smart lighting systems can help decrease the number of injuries and even fatalities caused on the roadways every year by creating an articulate and crafted means of lighting beyond what we are used to. In Canada, especially, where there are already a plethora of factors that impact visibility (snow, hail, ice, etc), a means of increasing visibility when plausible is a win. 


What do smart lighting systems do, exactly?


Smart lighting systems are a lot like the smart entities we can find in our homes, cars, or mobile devices. As opposed to being one-dimensional or working on a manual command, they can react to the world around them and make adjustments when necessary. The sensors within connect to the cloud via a cellular network. From there, the data is generated based on the surrounding conditions. Once this is sent to the cloud, the lighting can then perform actions based on the surrounding factors. If needed, lights can be dimmed or brightened. 


How can adaptive smart lighting create safer conditions?


When put in certain situations, we learn how to adapt in order to create the optimal result for that situation. When we are hot, we find shade, when we are cold, we bundle up. The way we adapt to our surroundings is what keeps us safe and the same can be said for smart street lights. Smart lighting can promote awareness from both drivers and pedestrians. For example, if a light detects a large animal on a dimly lit portion of the road, the smart light system can increase the brightness, bringing attention to the driver so they have more time to react and avoid the animal on the roadway, thus, avoiding a potentially devastating accident. 


Adaptive smart lighting doesn’t just work when it comes to obstacles, objects, or people surrounding or on the roadways, it works with weather elements too. Fog is a major contributor to low visibility and a plethora of motor vehicle accidents occur in foggy conditions. This is because the distance the driver can see ahead of them is compromised; should there be heavy traffic up ahead, fog can decrease the reaction time a driver has to hit the brakes in this instance. Smart lighting adapts to, not only fog but several conditions that impair visibility. This allows drivers to be more aware of their surroundings and can put less stress on them throughout their drive. 


Who can benefit from smart lighting?


Smart lighting can benefit so many and create a safer commute for humans and animals alike! Those who can benefit from smart lighting are;


  • Motorists

  • Pedestrians

  • Cyclists, skateboarders, rollerbladers

  • Wildlife - large and small

  • Tourists who may not know the area all too well

  • Cities - smart technology can attract a lot of attention from tourists and businesses

  • Law enforcement


What seemed like a feat of the future has come to reality in the present. Smart lighting joins the roster of smart items and ideas creating a safe and convenient world for all of us! Lighting poles and lighting work cohesively to create structures that will withstand whatever elements are thrown at them while positively impacting the world around them.


Ready to make the leap to smart technology? Contact us today for the poles needs to keep your smart tech up and running!