Project: Guidelines for Routeing Assessment of Navigation Systems

Reference: S0327/VD

Last update: 17/12/2008 16:03:50


The overall project objective was to produce a guide for the assessment of a routing strategy. The specific objectives were to:
. Develop principles for safe and appropriate navigation system routing.
. Identify possible test methods and procedures for assessing a navigation system's routing strategy.
. Develop a guide (checklist) for system operators and the Authority to use for assessment of a routing strategy for licensing purpose.
. Design and cost a programme of dissemination, identifying the targeted audience for maximum impact of the routing assessment guide. This objective was not pursued as it was considered inappropriate to design dissemination of the guidelines whilst the licensing requirements are under review.


In vehicle navigation systems can help reduce congestion and improve road safety but if the routing information is not well presented these systems could have an adverse effect.
A system providing Dynamic Route Guidance (DRG) currently (April 2006) requires a licence under the Road Traffic (Driver Licensing and Information Systems) Act 1989 and the associated Exemption Order (Statutory Instrument, 1990) . Dynamic systems, as defined by the Exemption Order, provide specific directions to the driver as to the precise route which that vehicle should follow, in such a manner that the directions may be revised as the traffic conditions change, during the course of the journey. (NB route guidance systems which do not take prevailing traffic conditions into account, sometimes known as static systems, are not required to be licensed). Before issuing such a licence, the Department assesses a system for satisfactory Human-Machine Interaction (HMI) safety as well as safe navigation routing. The DfT is currently reviewing the licensing regime.
There is a satisfactory means of assessing the HMI safety (A Safety Checklist for the Assessment of In-Vehicle Information Systems (Stevens et al, 1999)). However, apart from a brief "draft" minimum requirements document, no agreed guide or checklist existed to carry out the assessment of routing strategy of a navigation system. There was therefore a need for developing a "Routing Assessment Guide".
The development of guidelines under this project is intended to serve two purposes: as a tool which the system provider can use for designing / producing safer route guidance systems (both static and dynamic); and as an agreed (with the industry) method of carrying out an assessment of the routing strategy. As well as providing support for a self-assessment by the system supplier, the guide can also be used for an assessment, or audit of the self-assessment, by an external organisation. The principle target of the guide is the Product Responsible Organisation (PRO), that is, the entity with authority to establish a new, or change an existing, product specification


TRL Limited
Crowthorne House, Nine Mile Ride, Wokingham, Berkshire, RG40 3GA
+44 (0)1344 773131

Contract details

Cost to the Department: £96,232.00

Actual start date: 01 July 2004

Actual completion date: 31 March 2006