Singapore

Tender called for trial of fully automated motorcycle test circuit

Learnermotorcyclists and drivers could in a few years' time be assessed for a road licence without the presence of a human tester, if a trial here proceeds smoothly.

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has called a tender for a trial of a fully automated circuit that will use technology to test motorcycle riders.

The Intelligent Driving Circuit (IDC) will eventually replace the current testing method, which involves a human assessor, for both car drivers and motorcyclists.

According to the tender documents on government procurement portal GeBiz, the trial is to be conducted on selected Class 2, 2A and 2B motorcycles, which are to be fitted with analytical equipment such as various sensors and cameras.

The tenderer is expected to supply two motorcycle units for each class and set up automated testing systems at the motorcycle course stations within the test circuit at the Singapore Safety Driving Centre (SSDC) in Woodlands Industrial Park.

The courses include the S course, crank course, slalom course, plank course, bumpy course, slope course and the emergency stop station.

The tender documents set out the riding errors that the automated testing system must be able to detect at the emergency stop station in a proof-of-concept test. These include failing to attain a minimum speed of 30kmh for Class 2B motorcycles and 40kmh for Class 2 and 2A motorcycles before executing the emergency stop, failing to look straight ahead and hold the handlebar firmly with both hands, and failing to grip the fuel tank with both knees.

The system must be able to achieve 100 per cent accuracy in detecting errors before it is implemented in full. The trial could take up to a year and a half, according to the tender documents.

When the IDC was first announced by Home Affairs and Law Minister K. Shanmugam in 2017, the minister said the trial would take place in 2021 and that the plan was to achieve full implementation by 2023.

MHA did not respond to queries on the trial. A training manager at SSDC declined to comment when approached. - THE STRAITS TIMES

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