Thruway Statewide Operations Center (TSOC) and Troop T
Safety, Incident Response and Traveler Information Systems
The Thruway Statewide Operations Center ("TSOC"), housed at the Authority's Administrative Headquarters in Albany, is the central location for the coordination of all traffic incident response, emergency management, and dissemination of traveler information along the entire Thruway. The TSOC operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. The Authority exchanges traffic and Intelligent Transportation Systems ("ITS") data with NYSDOT through the Regional Traffic Operation Centers, providing the public with a view of traffic operations across New York State so they may make more informed travel choices.
To increase the functionality of the TSOC, the Authority recently implemented an Advanced Traffic Management System to integrate and control all current and future ITS devices and systems. Information is provided to TSOC through a range of systems including:
- 173 closed circuit television cameras, many of which can be viewed on the Thruway website
- 80 permanent variable message signs
- 94 portable variable message signs
- 13 highway advisory radio stations
- 119 real‐time vehicle detector sites
Motorists can find traffic information and can also sign up for Thruway TRANSalert emails or text messages, which are generated by TSOC to warn travelers of potential delays or road hazards and provide other useful information.
Finally, a troop of New York State Police (Troop T) is entirely dedicated to policing on the Thruway System. The principal mission concern for Troop T is to increase safety on the roadway and reduce fatal and personal injury auto accidents. They address the issue through enforcement and education. Through the years, Troop T has participated in traffic enforcement initiatives directed at drivers who engage in behavior known to cause fatalities or exacerbate the fatality rate: speed, failure to use seatbelts and drunk and/or drugged driving. However, the greatest proven method to reduce fatalities is the day-to-day visible enforcement of traffic laws by the patrol troopers on the highway.
Good overall highway conditions, traveler access to online and radio information services, good incidence and weather response and the efforts of Troop T contributed to a very low fatality rate. The fatality rate on the Thruway is among the lowest in the nation at 0.23 fatalities per 100 million miles traveled. This compares to an index of 1.10 for the national average and 0.85 for all of New York State.