HP, Leo Burnett make smart poles for roads that honk to alert drivers on blind turns

Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By
May 02, 2017 11:04 AM IST

SmartLife Pole is the world’s first anti-collision vehicle management system at national highway 1.

Safety equipment in vehicles only limits the impact of accidental damage, and does not actually prevent the mishap. What if instead we made the roads smarter to prevent accidents?

SmartLife pole on the national highway 1.(YouTube screengrab)
SmartLife pole on the national highway 1.(YouTube screengrab)

HP Lubricants and Leo Burnett India too thought the same, as they installed the world’s first anti-collision vehicle management system at national highway 1. A pole with an inbuilt incoming vehicle alert mechanism is installed at a hairpin bend along the Jammu-Srinagar highway, which is touted as one of the most precarious highways by National Geographic.

The campaign #RoadsThatHonk is a pilot project run by Hindustan Petroleum, under which a SmartLife pole conceptualised, designed and executed by Leo Burnett India helps in warning drivers of another incoming vehicle on a blind turn.

(YouTube screengrab)
(YouTube screengrab)

Using radar and wireless technology, two poles installed on a bend detect speeds of oncoming vehicles, then communicate with each other to alert approaching vehicles on either sides with a horn.

Announcing the commencement of the project, Rajdeepak Das, chief creative officer, Leo Burnett, South Asia, said, “We are confident that #RoadsThatHonk will significantly reduce accidents and save several lives every year. Every life saved is a measure of success and reinstates our belief that #RoadsThatHonk has the potential for further scale on highways across the length and breadth of the country.”

“The entire project from development to installation took approximately 4-5 months. The pilot installed at the location will continue to stay there and regular data monitoring will be undertaken,” Das said in an emailed response to HT.

The company plans to install the smart pole at 18-20 such dangerous bends across the country and has also identified nine places including Zoji la Pass, Leh - Manali highway and Rohtang Pass.

Locations selected for SmartLife pole

Zoji la Pass

Neral-Matheran Road

National Highway 22

Chang La

Leh – Manali Highway

Munnar Road

Khardung La Pass

Gata Loops

Rohtang Pass

“For the current pilot project, we have partnered with the NHAI and received required approvals to install Smartlife poles at these locations,” Das said.

Amid regular attempts to make drivers smart and vehicles smarter, such poles could help make roads smart too and improve safety of roads in remote corners of the country.


    Gulshankumar Wankar was part of Hindustan Times’ nationwide network of correspondents that brings news, analysis and information to its readers. He no longer works with the Hindustan Times. .

Story Saved
Live Score
Saved Articles
My Reads
My Offers
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Monday, September 25, 2023
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Register Free and get Exciting Deals