The 5 Reasons Behind Those Tubes On New York Roads
I had a suspicion, but now I finally know the truth. There's at least five reasons why you may find yourself driving over sets on black rubber tubes on New York roads.
Road Sign Meanings in new York
There's plenty of secrets hiding in plain sight on roads all over the Hudson Valley. Last month, many of us were shocked to learn that there was an actual reason behind those tiny placards with lines and dots you see on so many roadside posts in New York (below).
Passing Zone Signs in New York
Those tiny and mysterious signs are actually signals to road painting crews, helping them know when to change line patterns on freshly paved asphalt. Two straight lines (above, left) mean a double-yellow line, and a sign with dots on one side and a line on the other means a passing zone. But back to those tubes...
The MetroCount Vehicle Classifier System
The tubes you see all across the Hudson Valley and beyond are part of a machine made by a company called MetroCount. The company calls themselves "traffic data specialists", and their machines do more than meet the eye. Those two humble tubes can collect some very impressive data.
What Do those Tubes on the Road Do?
The tubes are attached to what is essentially a weatherproof computer (above). Depending on how many tires roll over the tubes in a certain amount of time, the Vehicle Classifier System can determine if the vehicle is a passenger car, van, or even a truck with multiple axels. It can also determine the speed of a car, based on how quickly both sets of tires roll over the tubes. And that's not all.
MetroCount says their machine can also calculate how much room vehicles give each other (aka whether or not they tailgate), the volume of traffic on multi-lane roads, and of course which direction they are travelling. Towns and cities can then use the data to help determine the need for changes in traffic patterns, if certain roads are favorites of speeders, and more.