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Americans Hit the Road Thanks to Low Gas Prices


Standards assure safety for car travel

Gas prices have been falling nationwide for over 100 days, with an average price of $2.13 per gallon. According to AAA, prices are expected to remain under $3.00 per gallon through the end of 2015. With gas costs hitting its lowest levels at the pump since 2009, many motorists plan to ramp up travel, whether for vacations or daily driving. With the help of standards, these trips will be safer and more enjoyable for the whole family.

Visibility is one of the primary tenants of safety when driving, necessitating a clear windshield and sufficient roadway lighting. ANSI/IESNA RP-8-14, Roadway Lighting, was developed by the Illuminating Engineering Society (IES) to provide the design basis for lighting roadways, adjacent bikeways, and pedestrian ways for new construction or redesigned systems. The American National Standard (ANS) guides the development of lighting that produces quick, accurate, and comfortable seeing at night for vehicular and pedestrian traffic. IESNA is a member and accredited standards developer of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).

While some travelers relish pouring over paper maps to plan routes for efficiency and scenery, many are turning to global positioning systems, or GPS, to get them to their destinations. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO)'s Technical Committee (TC) 204, Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS), under U.S. leadership, has developed a number of standards that contribute to GPS tools. ISO 14825:2011, Intelligent transport systems - Geographic Data Files (GDF) - GDF5.O, for example, specifies the data model and encoding formats for geographic databases used in ITS, including in-vehicle and portable navigation systems. The U.S. holds the secretariat of ISO TC 204, with ANSI member and accredited standards developer the Intelligent Transportation Society of America (ITSA) serving as the delegated secretary and as the ANSI-accredited U.S. Technical Advisory Group (TAG) Administrator for the committee. The U.S.'s Dick Schnacke of TranScore currently serves as the chair of ISO TC 204.

For many drivers, the car is the perfect place to crank up the music and belt out a tune. ISO 10487-1:1992, Passenger car radio connections - Part 1: Dimensions and general requirements, provides specifications for both permanent and extractable car radios. This standard was developed by ISO TC 22, Road vehicles. The ANSI-accredited U.S. Technical Advisory Group (TAG) to TC 22 is administered by SAE International.

With gas prices at their lowest point in several years, now is the time to pack up the car and head onto the road - with standards in the passenger's seat!

For more information on gas prices nationwide, see AAA's news release.


Jana Zabinski

Senior Director, Communications & Public Relations


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Beth Goodbaum

Journalist/Communications Specialist


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