The EIP activities on quality recommendations for safety-related and real-time traffic information services organized a workshop on "Agreement on quality requirements and assessment methods for real-time and safety related traffic information services" in Thessaloniki, Greece on 30 September - 1 October, 2014. The workshop attracted participants also from outside EIP, such as road authorities and operators as well as traffic information service providers as TISA members. The workshop was hosted by Egnati Odos.
The workshop was a success with active discussion. It resulted in the agreement on the criteria for service level and quality for Safety Related Traffic Information (SRTI) and Real Time Traffic & Travel Information (RTTI), i.e. services according to the European Commission ITS Directive's Priority Actions c) and b), respectively. The workshop produced well-grounded definitions for these key service level and quality criteria, where we have for a long time lacked well-established definitions also approved by practitioners.
The workshop's other major achievement was to agree on a proposal on European minimum requirements for service level and quality of SRTI and selected RTTI with regard to most relevant criteria. The selected RTTI services were the following:
- Event information
- real-time event information services
- traffic conditions information services
- weather information services
- Status oriented RTTI services
- travel time information services
The minimum quality requirements should be met by all member states. The proposed values are initial target values that will be validated in the future. First discussions with member states outside the EIP will be started followed by the validation activity within the EIP+ project.
The workshop also discussed the quality assurance and quality assessment methods to be used for SRTI and RTTI in Europe. The major conclusion was that instead of methods, we today have at our disposal a collection of practices used by different road authorities and operators or service providers. The challenge was to find enough experiences from the use of these practices in different circumstances and operation environments. Hence, the workshop decided to proceed in selecting a prioritized set of quality assurance or assessment methods and practices based on the partners' and TISA members' expertise and experiences. The workshop also named a specific task forced to carry out this work.
It was regarded important to describe to methods and practices in a common way that would facilitate the use of the methods and practices in the intended way throughout Europe. The workshop agreed on a proposal on the framework and template to describe these methods in a user-friendly way, and planned the way forward to provide such descriptions.
The workshop finished with a common session together with EIP activity on Single Point of Access. The focus of the session was on SRTI and single access point quality requirements. The session was a brainstorming session providing an opportunity for open discussion and exchange of ideas and experiences on single access point.
It was pointed out that the national access points in member states have no obligation by European regulation to have any minimum level of quality. The requirements for the organization of the quality assessment of national access point were discussed. The session reached a conclusion that there is a clear need to make a distinction between quality requirements for data and services and the quality requirements for the single access point. The type of the national access point is relevant for the quality assessment procedure (e.g. things applicable to a database are not applicable to a web site). Two types of quality criteria for national access point were identified in the session: 1) performance: exact figures, and 2) confidentiality and integrity. It will be necessary to develop a matrix which will summarise which type of quality criteria will be relevant for each type of national access point.
A certification approach for national access points was also proposed in the session. Certification as defined in the proposal could work for higher level single access points, but it was not considered realistic for thin single access points and small data providers.