Transportation Security

Federal

Current federal transportation legislation, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) (Public Law 117-58, also known as the “Bipartisan Infrastructure Law” or BIL) was signed into law by President Biden on Nov. 15, 2021. BIL included one change from prior federal transportation legislation, Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act, related to transportation security. In short, the change was to expand the list of eligible funding activities for the National Highway Performance Program (NHPP) to include improvements that protect segments of the National Highway System (NHS) from cybersecurity threats. (Source: https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/specialfunding/nhpp/bil_nhpp_implementation_guidance-05_25_22.pdf)

State

Federal regulations require each state to develop a risk-based asset management plan for the National Highway System (NHS) to improve or preserve the condition of the assets and the performance of the system. In general, a state risk-based asset management plan must address pavements and bridges. But but it is encouraged to include all infrastructure assets within the highway right-of-way in the risk-based asset management plan, such as pavement markings, culverts, guardrail, signs, traffic signals, lighting, Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) infrastructure, rest areas, etc.

Regional

OKI will continue to collaborate with a variety of public and private partners to use the most current technology and guiding principles to minimize the impact of natural and man-made events and system failures. This will ensure a secure, reliable, regional, multi-modal transportation network. A regional transportation security strategy involves sustainable prevention, detection, response, and recovery efforts, with the goal of protecting regional transportation systems’ critical infrastructure. The following text documents actions and strategies being applied throughout the region for strengthening regional security.

Critical Infrastructure

The OKI region is fortunate to have a diverse range of multi-modal transportation infrastructure. The critical need for the region to invest in the maintaining and expanding of this infrastructure ensures the steady flow of freight, economic activity and the quality of life in the area. It will also help address our federal mandate to improve transportation system resiliency and reliability.

OKI staff collect, analyze and present available data on regional security through our Performance Measures Website. Of particular interest to regional security are the website’s interactive maps and data on bridge and pavement conditions, as well as pollutant emission levels impacting our air quality.

Highways

In addition to fulfilling the mobility needs of the community, highways are essential for evacuation and in response and recovery efforts. About 27,400 lane miles of roadways in the OKI region transport both passengers and goods. On an average day, travelers log about 51 million vehicle miles.

National Highway System in the OKI Region

Red lines like a spiderweb radiate from the center of an outline of the OKI region on grey background.

Source: OKI

National Highway Systems

The core of the roadway network is this region’s component of the National Highway System (NHS). The more than 2,516 lane miles of NHS within the OKI region are shown in red on the map. This region’s NHS components carry over 50% of the region’s daily traffic.

Trucks carry most of the region’s freight by both weight and value. In 2017, trucks carried 67.5%, or 116.6 million tons. In addition, they account for almost all the region’s Hazardous Material (HAZMAT) incidences reported for the past two decades. During this time, the number of truck-related HAZMAT incidences has increased by over 145% and the quantity of HAZMAT released has risen over 256%.

Taking a proactive approach in the transport of hazardous materials, several locations in the OKI region are restricted to such cargoes. Alternate routes are provided and must be used. Re-routing hazardous highway shipments from densely urban areas reduces the opportunity for chemical disaster risks, whether an accident or terrorism threat. For trucks, the OKI region has two hazardous material restricted routes. One route is designated code “A” and covers “All Non-Radioactive Hazardous Materials” for Interstate 275 (I-275) in Campbell County. The second route has a restriction code of “0” and covers “All Hazardous Materials” on Interstates 71/75 (I-71/75) in Kenton County, including the Brent Spence Bridge.

Bridges

Over two million people live in the OKI region. Their livelihood and the region’s economy greatly depend on the highway system. With the natural barrier of the Ohio, the Licking, Great Miami and Little Miami rivers and their numerous tributaries, bridges are a critical element of the region and a key consideration of disaster preparedness. The Ohio River Bridges represent seven of some of the most critical structures in the region. Listed from east to west:

  • I-275 Combs-Hehl Bridge
  • I-471 Daniel Carter Beard Bridge
  • US 27 Taylor Southgate Bridge
  • John A. Roebling Suspension Bridge
  • US 42 Clay Wade Bailey Bridge
  • I-71/75 Brent Spence Bridge
  • I-275 Carroll C. Cropper Bridge
Five bridges connecting Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky

Source: OKI

Particularly important to the OKI region and the nation is the efficient running of the Brent Spence Bridge (BSB). I-75 connects Miami, Florida, and Sault Ste. Marie, Canada. In its current state, the bridge presents a problem for homeland security efforts. The movement of emergency vehicles during an emergency is restricted by the lack of shoulders and substandard vertical clearance of the BSB. In late 2022, USDOT awarded the project $1.6 billion. The cost for the entire project — which includes a companion bridge and more than eight miles of improved highway and interchanges — is estimated to be $3.6 billion. ODOT and KYTC are working together to have the BSB companion bridge open to traffic in 2029.

Railroads

Railroads are vital to the economy, national defense, and public health, providing critical support to the Department of Defense Strategic Rail Corridor Network (STRACNET), which has over 30,000 miles of interconnected rail line and provides the backbone for the movement of the DOD’s shipments across the country.

Multiple railroad tracks blocked by sideways rail cars while endless rows of rail cars are parked in the background.

Source: Reginald Victor. City of Cincinnati. (2011).

With nearly 500 miles of freight rail, 786 public and private at-grade crossings, 195 railroad bridges, and about 137 trains traveling in the region daily — which is forecasted to increase — maintaining rail infrastructure is critical to the safe, efficient, and environmentally sustainable economic competitiveness of this mode. The greatest number of trains, more than 100 daily, travel through the heart of the region along CSX’s Cincinnati Terminal Subdivision track, between Mitchell Street, just north of CSX’s Queensgate Yard, and Longworth Hall, just south of the NS Gest Street Yard. Major disruption to these lines would result in rerouting trains around the region with significant impacts to congestion on other rail lines, shipment time and delays. It could also result in a temporary mode shift, adding to truck congestion in the region. The NS and CSX railroads have bridges crossing the Ohio River south of Cincinnati, and adverse impacts on them represent a security risk with a profile like the Ohio River highway bridges.

Rail-related Hazardous Material (HAZMAT) incidences account for only 1% of all HAZMAT transportation-related incidences in the OKI region from 2011 to 2020. The number of the region’s rail HAZMAT incidences decreased by almost 40% between the past two decades. There are three major areas of risk linked to the movement of HAZMATs by rail: derailments, tank car rupture, and regulatory oversight. Derailments are not necessarily directly related to HAZMAT movement, but they are a significant risk for spills from resultant tank car ruptures. Ruptures can also occur when struck by vehicles, heavy equipment, or other rail cars. The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) and Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) are responsible for regulatory oversight.

Current rail technology enables railroads to inspect their track and equipment with greater efficiency and reliability. With OKI regional rail freight volumes forecasted to increase, to continue the downward trend of rail HAZMAT gas or liquid leaks, expanded use of maintenance-related rail technologies, such as those listed below have the potential to improve safety and operations through improved railroad maintenance. (Source: The Association of American Railroads (AAR). Modern Freight Railroads Run on Technology. (October 2022).

Expanded maintenance-related rail technologies
  • Automated Track Inspection (ATI) Technologies: Using lasers and cameras, ATI allows railroads to see how the track performs under the load of a train. Data is sent to a centralized location it is verified and maintenance is scheduled as necessary.
  • Track Inspection Vehicles: Track inspection vehicles (also known as track geometry cars) that use lasers and ultrasound as they travel along the tracks to measure track alignment, elevation in curves, track wear, and internal defects that could lead to accidents.
  • Wayside Detectors: Infrared and laser sensors alongside the track to assess the condition of train wheels and bearings to preempt overheating. The data provided shows patterns to predict when there may be overheating by as much as three months in advance.
  • Machine Visioning: Machine visioning technology uses cameras to inspect trains as they move to reduce inspection times through algorithms that analyze the images to identify anomalies.
  • Predictive Maintenance: Machine learning and AI help railroads predict and prevent maintenance issues based on patterns and trends found through sensors across the network, allowing railroads to develop a five-year planning horizon for proactive repairs and maintenance.

Ohio and Licking Rivers

The Ohio River is the largest tributary by volume of the Mississippi River Inland Waterway System. The river’s depth is at least nine feet along the length of the entire navigation system. As of January 2022, OKI maritime system consists of 156.2 miles of commercially navigable riverfront bordering six of OKI’s eight member counties along the Ohio and Licking rivers. When combined, this area contains 104 docks within 58 commercial river terminals, owned by 42 different private companies handling a variety of bulk cargo, and all supported with 35 fleeting areas.

A group of firefighters aim a hose at door where white smoke is coming out.

Source: United States Coast Guard. (2008).

The United States Department of Homeland Security and United States Coast Guard maintain a list of Maritime Critical Infrastructure – Key Resources (MCI – KR). The Coast Guard conducts regular security training and simulation drills to prepare for emergencies and protect these maritime resources. Adopted in 2006, the Maritime Transportation Systems Security Plan provides strategic recommendations to holistically improve the security of maritime transportation systems including:

  • Locks and Dams
  • Power generation plants
  • Highway, rail and pedestrian bridges
  • Pipeline crossings
  • Drinking water intakes
  • Strategic choke points
  • Marine Events (Boat races, fireworks shows, etc.)
  • Casino boats and passenger vessels
  • Stadiums

Locks & Dams

Upstream of St. Louis, tows are limited to 15 barges because of the size of the locks—chambers that lift or lower river vessels through dam structures—which are required to maintain the minimum channel depth of nine feet.

The OKI region is situated in the Markland Pool — the name attributed to the body of water located above the Markland Locks and Dam built in 1964, and that is located at Ohio River mile marker 531.5. The Markland Pool extends upstream for 95.3 miles to the Captain Anthony Meldahl Locks and Dam built in 1962 and located at Ohio River mile marker 436.0. The Markland Pool also includes, for a short distance, three navigable tributaries of the Ohio River — the Great Miami, Licking and Little Miami rivers.

Both the Markland and Meldahl facilities have a tainter gate, or radial dam gate design, of 12 gates. Although both have emergency action plans, the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) reports having “reliability concerns” for both facilities, adding that their hazard potential is “significant.” The USACE Louisville District states that the effects of not maintaining the Markland facility include: “ … increased transportation costs and delays in the shipment of raw materials and a loss of access between Indiana State Highway 156 and U.S. Highway 42 in Kentucky.” The USACE Huntington District reports that failure to maintain Meldahl could result in “the complete termination of commercial navigation which would raise shipping costs and delay essential commodities including fuel for power plants, petroleum products for the Greater Cincinnati Metropolitan Area and raw materials for major industries.”

Aerial view of a river and bridge like structure spanning one side to the other. Text points out dimensions of some of the structures.

Source: United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). (2013).

Modernization and Maintenance

Modernization and maintenance along the Ohio, Mississippi and Tennessee-Tombigbee river systems continues to be a top local, regional and national priority. More than half of the current navigation structures are past their structural design life. Plans are underway to modernize several locks and dams; however, a systematic improvements program for inland maritime networks is needed to ensure continued commerce and security.

Pipelines

The OKI region’s pipelines transport nearly 9% of all freight tonnage. And since many of their commodities are volatile petroleum-based products — such as gasoline and liquefied natural gas (LNG) — safe and secure pipeline infrastructure is critical. In 2020, more than half of the transmission pipeline miles in the OKI region were carrying natural gas. The energy transportation network of the OKI region has 1,130 miles of transmission pipeline. This represents less than 0.4% of all transmission pipeline miles in the U.S. Like rail, pipelines are privately owned and operated. In 2020, 17 companies were operating our region’s pipelines. The public sector’s role in pipelines is to protect people and environment by advancing the safe transportation of energy and other hazardous materials essential to our daily lives.

White cloud blows outwards from a rusty metal pipe just above grass covered ground.

Source: Morgan & Morgan Law Firm. Personal Injury Webpage. (2022).

A performance review of transmission pipelines in the OKI region reveals that its total pipeline mileage has increased by 19% over the past decade. More pipeline would equate to more product moved, raising the probability rate for occurrences of safety incidences, environmental impacts, and other factors. On the contrary, OKI’s review shows that fewer serious incidences involving pipelines have occurred with fewer fatalities and injuries. In addition, the region has also experienced a reduction in the number and amount of hazardous liquid spills released to the environment from pipelines.

Pipeline forecasts from the United States Department of Transportation’s Freight Analysis Framework (FAF) show an expected increase of 49% in tonnage by 2050. The greatest increase is anticipated in basic chemicals (217%), which includes natural gas. The huge growth in natural gas volume is due to widespread use of gas in the region, its abundant domestic production, the move of power plants from coal to gas, and relatively low environmental emissions. Future volume forecasts and existing capacity may require the introduction of a larger diameter replacement pipeline and/or the extension of pipeline to meet demand and support the mode’s economic competitiveness. As our region and nation transition to cleaner, more environmentally sustainable resources, our reliance on pipeline security will continue.

Transit

The effectiveness of transit systems depends on their accessibility. As a result, transit agencies face significant challenges in making their systems secure. For example, the high ridership of some transit agencies makes them attractive targets for terrorists but also makes certain security measures, like metal detectors, impractical. In a chemical spill or other emergency event, transit could assist in evacuating large numbers of people out of harm’s way

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Butler County Regional Transit Authority

The Butler County Regional Transit Authority (BCRTA) developed an Emergency Preparedness Plan to address the organization’s changing needs. Global positioning systems (GPS) are now on all fixed, paratransit, and flex service vehicles which allow the dispatch center to monitor movements in real-time. A cradle point project was implemented in 2020 to allow wireless access to the on-board surveillance system in real-time.

City of Middletown Transit System

The Middletown Transit System is operated as a division of the city’s Department of Community Revitalization. As part of the city, the transit system is incorporated in the Emergency Preparedness Plan created in 2000, and the plan is updated as needed. Transit system security also includes electronically monitored facilities and random on-board police checks.

Clermont Transportation Connection

The Clermont Transportation Connection (CTC) is the public transit service for Clermont County. CTC has an approved System Security and Emergency Preparedness Plan. Current security measures taken by CTC include on-board video cameras, emergency call buttons and electronically secured and monitored facilities.

Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority

The Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority (SORTA) operates Metro, the public transit service for the greater Cincinnati area. Metro has an approved System Security and Emergency Preparedness Plan with functioning components for continuous updating. Metro has also developed a Continuity of Operations Plan (COOP) to help guide the agency in the event of an emergency.

Current security measures taken by Metro include on-board video cameras, emergency call buttons and a global positioning system. Security measures also include random police rides, police checks while buses are in service and periodic canine inspections of the coaches at the garage. Metro’s facilities are secured with proximity employee ID badge readers and monitored via a closed-circuit camera monitoring system. SORTA also plans to install surveillance cameras at all SORTA facilities to decrease safety risks.

In addition to working closely with local law enforcement, Metro has developed an operational relationship with the Department of Homeland Security and the regional Emergency Management Agency in establishing a unified system of security for the prevention of intentional harm to their employees and the ability to maintain service in the event of an emergency.

Warren County Transit Service

The Warren County Transit Service (WCTS) has a System Security and Emergency Preparedness Plan. Also, WCTS has on-board cameras, and each vehicle has a radio that is connected to the county’s public safety communication system. This system is part of the statewide Multi-Agency Radio Communications (MARC) program that allows drivers direct access to emergency dispatchers.

Transit Authority of Northern Kentucky

The Transit Authority of Northern Kentucky (TANK) has an Emergency Preparedness Plan (EPP) that was completed in 2003. The EPP established by TANK includes a communications checklist, media process, alternative vehicle and fuel storage locations, and finance and administrative procedures. The EPP is updated periodically (most recently in 2014), with contact information and any changes necessitated by TANK’s involvement with other regional emergency planning partners. TANK also has a shelter in place policy, adopted in 2018.

In addition, TANK works closely with local law enforcement, SORTA, the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT), the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) and the Northern Kentucky Emergency Planning Committee to play a significant role in protecting against, responding to and recovering from major events. TANK’s fleet of vehicles are equipped with multiple onboard security cameras and a GPS-based vehicle location system, which is monitored 24 hours a day, seven days a week. TANK’s administrative, operations, and maintenance facilities are equipped with motion-sensing cameras that record continuously. Access to TANK’s operating facility is secured with badge readers.

Regional Homeland Security

For more than a decade, a diverse network of partnering agencies have worked to broaden emergency planning and response efforts in the Greater Cincinnati region. Many groups have been formed and meet to address regional issues associated with homeland security. OKI partnerships with such regional organizations are in direct alignment with The FAST Act’s policy of encouraging MPOs to consider broadening to encompass consultations with officials responsible for risk reduction from natural disasters.

Security and Emergency Management Agencies

There are three levels of emergency response in the OKI region:  local fire and police agencies, which have the resources and equipment to manage most natural and human disasters; county emergency management agencies, which plan and coordinate major response activities; and state emergency management agencies, which coordinate emergency response staff and equipment from a deeper resource pool.

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Details of Emergency Response

For most of the security and emergency cases, local police and fire agencies are equipped to handle incidents including HAZMAT releases or major infrastructure failures. Where there is an uncommon release of material, agencies have “mutual aid” agreements to share technical resources if a certain agency lacks capacity or expertise. Similarly, larger emergency incidents — such as extraordinary fires, materials spills, or infrastructure failures — can draw on the combined human and equipment resources of multiple jurisdictions across a region.

County emergency management agencies play a key role in emergency planning and coordination. Planning includes inventorying resources that can be deployed in the event of a disaster, planning for infrastructure disruptions, identifying temporary housing resources for displaced people, and conducting mock disaster exercises with local response agencies.

Greater Cincinnati GIS Users Group

The Greater Cincinnati Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Users Group convenes across state, county, and city boundaries to learn from one another and consider opportunities for collaboration to benefit the region. The group advocates for a coordinated regional approach to the design and development of GIS databases, a unified data dictionary and data standards, which promote the flow of information and data sharing across the region. This regional GIS database could also be utilized in response to any number of security issues facing the region by local emergency agencies, all working from the same base of updated geographic information. User group members have offered their GIS expertise during extended activations of the Regional Operations Center (ROC). 

Disaster Preparedness Coalition

The Disaster Preparedness Coalition (DPC) is a multi-disciplinary group of agencies and organizations who collaborate to prepare for, respond to, and recover from disasters, mass casualty incidents, public health emergencies, or other catastrophic incidents requiring a unified response. The DPC region encompasses southwest Ohio, northern Kentucky, and southeast Indiana, enhancing the region’s ability to achieve emergency preparedness capabilities as recommended by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response.

Regional Emergency Mapping System

OKI, in cooperation with regional partners and SOSINK, developed and uses a cutting-edge emergency management system known as RAVEN911 (Regional Asset Verification & Emergency Network). This system incorporates critical infrastructure layers, live data feeds and analytic capabilities into an Internet-based common operating picture, allowing emergency responders from across the Greater Cincinnati region to identify significant infrastructure and key resources.

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Learn more about RAVEN911

RAVEN911 provides a common operating picture to achieve situational awareness and a series of tools to prepare for, respond to or recover from a large-scale emergency. RAVEN911 can help identify local resources such as the closest fire stations and urgent care centers. It can gather intelligence about a particular emergency via integrated Twitter, Instagram, and Flickr search functions. Also, RAVEN911 can view live feeds around emergency scenes, which are helpful in determining evacuation capacities and routes.

This system is utilized by first responder disciplines defined by the Department of Homeland Security including Fire, EMS, Hazardous Materials, Law Enforcement, Public Health, Government, Hospitals, Public Works, Emergency Management, Communications, Volunteers/Public (such as Red Cross or Salvation Army), numerous Federal Agencies and Private Industry Partners.

RAVEN911 incorporates the aforementioned emergency response tools and technologies into a single Web-based interface, which ensures that all stakeholders are “reading from the same script” and facilitates a common operating picture for all users. RAVEN911 provides a progressive solution to traditional pen and paper systems, which allows emergency personnel to define incidents spatially and visualize response assets.

The system covers a 12-county, three-state region, encompassing southwest Ohio, southeast Indiana and northern Kentucky. OKI’s project partner, the Hamilton County Emergency Management Agency (HCEMA), worked on behalf of emergency management agencies from across the region.

Regional Security Planning Elements

OKI has completed a number of regional and sub-regional plans or studies. Many of these documents include security-related recommendations for future implementation. Although the initial intent of these recommendations may have been to address congestion or travel time, taken in a broader context, these elements could also assist in increasing the region’s security through improved transportation networks. The text that follows provides a sampling of such recommendations and references the plan or study from which it was drawn. This information is presented for consideration and further application to benefit the security of the entire OKI region.

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Intelligent Transportation System

OKI’s Regional Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) Architecture Update and Strategic Plan was most recently adopted in August 2022. The architecture represents a shared vision of how each agency’s systems will work together in the future, sharing information and resources to provide a safer, more efficient, and more effective transportation system for travelers in the region. In addition, the Strategic Plan includes a compilation of planned ITS projects ranging from adaptive traffic signals and collision avoidance systems to smart corridors and lanes and parking guidance systems. These projects will help meet the ITS needs and goals of the OKI region over the next ten plus years.

Regional Traffic Management

Regional traffic is managed by ODOT, INDOT and KYTC in their respective states via Statewide Traffic Management Centers ITMC). The TMC operates and manages multiple programs and technologies to facilitate the movement of people and goods and is comprised of closed-circuit television cameras that are located along the region’s interstate corridors. These cameras relay information back to a control center via fiber optic cable and telephone lines. The information is distributed to motorists via OHGO (ODOT), TRIMARC and GoKY (KYTC), and TrafficWise (INDOT), and changeable message signs.

The current components of the ODOT, INDOT, and KYTC traveler information system:

  • 511 phone number
  • OHGO website and mobile app (ODOT)
  • OHGO API (ODOT)
  • TRIMARC website (KYTC)
  • GoKY website (KYTC)
  • TrafficWise (INDOT
  • Overhead highway message boards
  • Roadside travel time signs
  • Queue warning systems
  • Variable speed limit signs
  •  

All of this information is accessible 24/7:

  • Incidents (ODOT, INDOT, KYTC or Waze detected)
  • Construction (current or planned)
  • Camera images and videos
  • Travel delayWeather hazards
  • Digital sign messages (Travel times, incident information, variable speed limits, and truck parking)
Emergency Traffic Signal Preemption

Emergency vehicle preemption was widely adopted throughout the OKI region and has been implemented in such communities as the cities of Loveland and Hamilton, and Liberty Township and was documented in the Western Hamilton County Transportation Study and the Dixie Highway Corridor Study. The Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices 2003 Edition, issued by the Federal Highway Administration, defines preemption control as “The transfer of normal operation of a traffic control signal to a special control mode of operation”. Preemption devices can be provided for any type of vehicle that requires the immediate right-of-way at an intersection such as emergency vehicles.

In the OKI region, emergency preemption has been supported by local elected officials, staff and police, fire and emergency medical service (EMS) operators. Stakeholders view preemption as a means of improving response time of emergency personnel and safety at intersections. A Hamilton County study of Colerain Avenue showed that with the use of emergency preemption, EMS travel time could be reduced by as much as 22%. In emergency situations, this amount of time savings could literally mean the difference between life and death.

Adaptive Traffic Signals

The Boone County Transportation Plan (January 2018) considered innovations occurring at the time in transportation operations and infrastructure to address safety, congestion and other key mobility challenges. Currently most signal systems use a combination of timing, vehicle detection, and strategic offsets to move platoons of traffic through a corridor. However, a new method of traffic signal system timing is available, known as adaptive signal controls. These controls detect the traffic demand and adjust signal timing based on real time demand. Depending on the traffic patterns and existing signal timing, adaptive signal controls can reduce delays between 10% and 50%.

This type of technology moves beyond earlier employment of emergency preemption devices in that adaptive traffic signals enable safe, interoperable networked wireless communications among vehicles, the infrastructure, and passengers’ personal communications devices, thereby more efficiently and safely moving all vehicles along an entire corridor whether in every day or emergency traffic conditions. As a result of the Boone County Transportation Plan, the City of Florence is partnering with Boone County to introduce a signal upgrade project along the Mall Road, US 42, and Ewing Boulevard corridors. The signal system upgrade will include a central based signal system, upgraded controllers at 24 intersections, adaptive signal control, emergency vehicle preemption, CCTV cameras and a fiber optic communication network. A similar project is in the planning phase along US-27 in Newport, Southgate, Fort Thomas, Highland Heights and NKU, while adaptive signal systems have been implemented in the cities of Cincinnati, Fairfield, and Florence.

Integrated Corridor Management

The United States Department of Transportation has introduced the concept of Integrated Corridor Management (ICM). ICM is defined as a collection of operational strategies and advanced technologies that allow multiple transportation subsystems to operate in a coordinated and integrated manner. With ICM, transportation professionals can manage the transportation corridor as a multimodal system rather than a fragmented network of individual assets. Using a wide variety of operating scenarios, operating agencies can manage demand and capacity across multiple travel modes in real-time to improve mobility, reduce fuel consumption and emissions, and increase travel time reliability and predictability. For ICM projects to be implemented across the OKI Region, additional investments will be needed in infrastructure that supports communication.

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Fiber Optic Networks

Fiber optic cables are the most modern and reliable means of transferring large amounts of data quickly and seamlessly. Cables are composed of flexible glass or plastic tubes that use laser light beams to transmit data and are not susceptible to electromagnetic interference like metal cables. This allows data to flow over great distances without degrading. The biggest limitation hindering widespread fiber optic adoption is the large capital expenditure of installing new fiber optic lines when old infrastructures such as DSL and cable are still serving customers. A fiber optic backbone is a needed first step in supporting an ICM network.

Big Data

In our almost two decades, post 9/11 world, homeland security has taken on new meaning since the last update of this Plan. With the rapid expansion in technological innovations, as data moves faster and more frequently, it becomes more challenging to ensure not just the privacy of public and personal data, but the security of entire networks and physical infrastructure that is being operated through technology. This issue is receiving a tremendous amount of attention due to the development of Autonomous Vehicles (AVs), Connected Vehicles (CVs) and autonomous vehicle features.

Over the past few years, USDOT has been initiating a national discussion and creating a framework for AV technology. The most recent version, Preparing for the Future of Transportation: Automated Vehicle 3.0, was released in October 2018 and expands USDOT’s scope to include all surface on-road transportation systems around advancing multi-modal safety, reducing policy uncertainty, and outlining a process for working with USDOT.

Cybersecurity

Transportation systems are increasingly complex, with a growing number of advanced, integrated functions. Transportation systems are also more reliant than ever on multiple paths of connectivity to communicate and exchange data. USDOT is working to set cybersecurity standards and establishing models and partnerships to mitigate the risk of hacking or intrusions.

State, local, and tribal governments face unique cybersecurity threats that can endanger critical infrastructure. Transportation systems that depend on digital infrastructure are at risk when they do not prioritize maintaining security, modernizing systems to reduce vulnerabilities, and implementing enhancements to increase the resiliency of digital infrastructure. Significant service degradation has occurred when technology, people, and processes failed to prevent security failures; including data encrypting ransomware, other malware, and insider-threat activities. To mitigate potential threats, appropriate investments in the digital infrastructure include strong security and functional testing of the technology, people, and processes. As threats evolve, key decision makers should have an effective and flexible security program in place to assess and manage risk, including evaluating technology, key facilities, engaged personnel, and security processes. Plans to respond to cyber-attacks should be exercised, and should be aligned with emergency management and recovery protocols shared across all industry sectors.

Privacy

While advanced safety technologies have the potential to provide enormous safety, convenience, and other important benefits to consumers, data privacy concerns are frequently raised as potential impediments to deployment.

Interoperability

In addition to standards that support interoperable integration, efforts are focused on describing common terminology, required performance capabilities, and interfaces between subsystems inside automated systems. There are also sets of published best practices and frameworks that complement and are used in conjunction with voluntary technical standards.

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