Browse Definitions :
Definition

variable speed limit (VSL)

A variable speed limit is a flexible restriction on the rate at which motorists can drive on a given stretch of road. The speed limit changes according to the current environmental and road conditions and is displayed on an electronic traffic sign. Signs typically indicate a maximum speed and may also list the minimum.

Variable speed limits are implemented to increase safety and provide clear guidance for motorists. Conventional speed limit signs, in contrast, usually list a single speed, generally the maximum rate. The maximum speed limit is generally considered to apply when conditions are optimal: There is no precipitation or fog and the roads are free of snow, water and ice, for example. Drivers are expected to adjust their speed to adapt to any adverse conditions, but there are no rates specified for particular situations.

variable-speed-limitThe lack of specificity of conventional signage can contribute to accidents, speeding tickets and criminal charges. Many motorists assume that posted speed limits apply at all times and drive at that speed in all conditions, but the maximum speed can be quite unsafe at other times. Charges for "excessive speed" can be the result, even though the motorist may have been driving under the posted speed limit. In the event of an accident, excessive speed could be considered dangerous driving and result in criminal charges.

Flexible speed limits solve that problem by adapting so that the posted speed limit is appropriate for the current conditions. Currently, the speed limit indicated on a variable sign is usually determined by a centralized authority, as deemed appropriate for conditions. As the Internet of Things (IoT) develops, however, networked sensors in the environment are likely to automate that process; connected and self-driving cars could also be designed to comply automatically.

This was last updated in April 2017

Continue Reading About variable speed limit (VSL)

SearchCompliance

  • information governance

    Information governance is a holistic approach to managing corporate information by implementing processes, roles, controls and ...

  • enterprise document management (EDM)

    Enterprise document management (EDM) is a strategy for overseeing an organization's paper and electronic documents so they can be...

  • risk assessment

    Risk assessment is the identification of hazards that could negatively impact an organization's ability to conduct business.

SearchSecurity

  • unified threat management (UTM)

    Unified threat management (UTM) describes an information security (infosec) system that provides a single point of protection ...

  • physical security

    Physical security is the protection of personnel, hardware, software, networks and data from physical actions and events that ...

  • attack vector

    An attack vector is a path or means by which an attacker or hacker can gain access to a computer or network server in order to ...

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • risk mitigation

    Risk mitigation is a strategy to prepare for and lessen the effects of threats faced by a business.

  • call tree

    A call tree is a layered hierarchical communication model that is used to notify specific individuals of an event and coordinate ...

  • Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS)

    Disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS) is the replication and hosting of physical or virtual servers by a third party to provide ...

SearchStorage

  • cloud storage

    Cloud storage is a service model in which data is transmitted and stored on remote storage systems, where it is maintained, ...

  • cloud testing

    Cloud testing is the process of using the cloud computing resources of a third-party service provider to test software ...

  • storage virtualization

    Storage virtualization is the pooling of physical storage from multiple storage devices into what appears to be a single storage ...

Close