The PATeye, an LED blue light road reflector, which acts as an ice detection warning system is being tested as a pilot project at 10 sites in Chilliwack. (Jennifer Feinberg/ The Progress)

B.C. city a test site for icy road indicators

Marker measures road temperatures and blue lights will flash when mercury dips below freezing

Road conditions in winter or even late spring, especially in shady spots on Chilliwack hills, can be icy.

Flashing blue-light markers were being installed at 10 locations Thursday as a pilot project to test the technology for Chilliwack.

The blue reflectors are solar-powered and can be seen from about a kilometre away, said Gerry Hlookoff of ATS Traffic.

“This product, the PATeye, has been used all through North America, Europe and New Zealand, and it was actually invented in New Zealand,” Hlookoff said.

“We are doing a test pilot with the City of Chilliwack where we are installing 10 units to help them detect corridors that have problems with freezing and black ice.”

The road markers were being installed Thursday, embedded into the centrelines at several locations.

“Road conditions can differ greatly from one area to another on any given day. In order to help drivers stay aware of changing road conditions, the City of Chilliwack is testing a new road safety device that will notify drivers of the potential for icy road conditions,” according to city officials.

Road test sites in Chilliwack:

• Chilliwack Mountain Road

• Hope River Road

• Old Orchard Road

• Marble Hill Road

• Teskey Way

• Promontory Road

• Vedder Mountain Road

The roads were chosen for testing because they are known by city staff for their potential for icy road conditions.

“They’re embedded in the asphalt flush so if you do have snow plows the blade goes right over top,” Hlookoff said. “This is the first generation that detects ice and moisture.”

In some spots, the blue reflectors will be in full view of the city’s traffic cameras, which will assist the Operations Department when implementing snow removal and ice control procedures. For example, if blue lights are flashing in one area, crews may want to make that location a priority for re-salting.

Although spring is around the corner, some roads may still see some frost due to shade. This will enable staff and drivers to experience the device in action prior to next fall/winter. City staff will be looking at its durability, and ability to withstand wet weather.

Each site will include signage to educate drivers about the blue flashing lights. City officials will also seek community feedback over the coming months to help gauge the PATeye’s effectiveness.

READ MORE: December ice storm

READ MORE: Chilliwack was ready


@CHWKjourno
jfeinberg@theprogress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

 

The PATeye, an LED blue light road reflector, which acts as an ice detection warning system is being tested as a pilot project at 10 sites in Chilliwack. (Jennifer Feinberg/ The Progress)

Gerry Hlookoff of ATS Traffic describes the PATeye, an LED blue-light reflector that acts as an ice detection warning system. It’s being tested in Chilliwack. (Jennifer Feinberg/ The Progress)

Just Posted

City council won’t accept more than a two-per cent tax increase

Financial plan amendment bylaw fails on first reading in 5-4 vote

Nanaimo buses first to get new technology

NextRide technology will help riders pinpoint where buses are and predicted arrival times

UPDATE: Police rule out alcohol, distraction in fatal crash in Nanoose

Passenger of fatal crash still in critical condition following crash in Nanoose Bay on Friday

Nanaimo plays hockey in support of Humboldt

Humboldt Strong Street Hockey Tournament held Sunday, April 22 at Nanaimo North Town Centre

Police look for hit-and-run suspect after senior struck

Incident occurred April 17 at about 3 p.m. at Selby and Fitzwilliam streets

Nanaimo plays hockey in support of Humboldt

Humboldt Strong Street Hockey Tournament held Sunday, April 22 at Nanaimo North Town Centre

Trudeau calls van attack ‘horrific and senseless’

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau calls van attack ‘horrific and senseless,’ says no apparent terror link

Officer’s actions ‘one shining moment’ after Toronto van attack

Arresting officer’s actions ‘one shining moment’ in the wake of Toronto van attack

Parksville resident interrupts break-and-enter

Two break-ins reported in the same day on the same street

As Osoyoos Indian Band flourishes, so too does Okanagan’s wine tourism

Indigenous practices have driven growth of South Okanagan’s wine history and agricultural influence

Judith Guichon steps down as Lieutenant Governor of B.C.

Election decision didn’t make her best moments from the past six years

Vancouver to rake in $30 million in empty homes tax in first year

The tax is the first of its kind in Canada, and was intended to address the city’s near-zero vacancy rate

LGBTQ advocates turn Victoria SOGI protest into dance party

Counter-protest outnumbers anti-SOGI activists on lawn of B.C. legislature

B.C.’s snowpack continues to increase, melting delayed

River Forecast Centre official says sudden melting further into the season could cause flooding

Most Read