The State of New York in the US has installed approximately 300 electronic variable message signs (VMS) and cameras to improve safety on the state’s major traffic roads.

The initiative is a part of New York Governor Andrew M Cuomo’s plans to boost communication, safety and awareness for motorists and travellers.

It is expected to help traffic management during heavy snowstorms, extreme weather and vehicular crashes.

The New York State Department of Transportation (NSYDOT) has deployed an additional 125 cameras and 143 VMS units at locations where major traffic levels have been observed.

With the new equipment, there are 1,150 NYSDOT cameras and 550 NYSDOT VMS boards in the state.

All units are linked to the DOT’s ten transportation management centres and can be accessed by the public through the 511NY traveller information system.

The VMS boards are expected to aid NYSDOT in providing motorists with prompt road closure information during snowstorms.

For the upcoming snow and ice season, the New York State Thruway has also installed 25 portable VMS across its 570-mile road network.

Cuomo said: “Severe weather events are happening with increasing frequency and these new electronic message signs and traffic cameras will give motorists the most up-to-date information on road conditions and traffic.

“Creating a 21st century transportation system isn’t just about building new roads and bridges; it’s about giving drivers timely information so they can make informed decisions and arrive at their destinations safely.”

Last November, Cuomo announced enhanced funding of $262.2m to municipal governments to boost the repairs and upgrades of bridges and culverts across the state.

In September last year, the New York State Thruway Authority launched cashless tolling in the overnight hours at the Harriman Toll plaza barrier.