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How is traffic data quality measured in real time?

Examining sources of traffic data to ensure good information for drivers

Radio broadcasters provide traffic information for listeners and subscribers, including how fast the traffic is moving, where accidents have occurred, updates on road construction, and more.

Where does all that information come from? One major provider gathers traffic data from various agencies and companies across the nation that monitor traffic and road conditions.

This national broadcaster hired Westat to evaluate the quality of traffic data to ensure its customers have the best information.

  • Westat trains drivers in GPS-equipped vehicles to travel on predefined routes to collect speed and travel time information.
  • At the same time, we capture information from other firms that sell traffic data to compare their information with ours.
  • We provide the client with a set of performance metrics that summarize these comparisons.
  • Since 2006, we have performed traffic audits for data gathered in more than 30 U.S. cities.
  • Our work has allowed this major radio broadcaster to provide the best available information to its customers and also negotiate how much it pays companies for the data.

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