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Debris Detection

Detect debris in the path of vehicles on a highway or in a tunnel using 360° long-range radar.

Debris detection is one of many automatic incident detection (AID) capabilities that Navtech's Intelligent Transport System (ITS) solution provides all from the same system.


What is debris detection?

Debris detection is the capability to identify dangerous debris on a motorway or in a tunnel.

Without debris detection technology, operators are typically only made aware of debris in the path of traffic when it is called in by the public, police, or a traffic patrol. Debris is a problem on all roads and in tunnels, causing swerving or actual impact. Debris can occur when items fall off vehicles or as a result of vehicle-related failures, such as tyre blowouts. In mountainous areas, roads also can be subject to landslips.


Why use radar for debris detection?

Debris-related accidents are more likely to happen in poor weather and visibility when it’s harder to see objects on the road and braking times are longer. Roads are dynamic environments that can quickly become challenging: whether it’s low sun reflecting in a driver’s eyes, heavy rain causing spray, or dense fog impairing visibility. Tunnels are dirty and dusty environments with changes in light at the portals affecting vision.

In these conditions, alternative technologies start to fail, and radar continues to work, improving road safety at the most critical times.

ITS SOLUTION Why use Navtech's 360° radar solution?

Navtech’s debris detection solution automatically spots objects on the road 24/7.

It detects objects down to 0.5m x 0.5m x 0.5m in seconds, and provides exact location data. This enables operators to quickly set warning signs and alert drivers, close lanes, and deploy response teams to remove the debris.

Debris detection is one of many capabilities delivered by Navtech’s ITS solution which also includes wrong-way driver detection, stopped vehicle detection, and vehicle count and classify, to name a few. It’s typically deployed as part of a comprehensive incident detection and traffic data solution and is chosen by customers for its additional functionality in comparison to other automatic incident detection technologies.

Our 360° long-range radar mean the entire roadway or tunnel is monitored 24/7 with fewer sensors. The solution can integrate into your wider traffic management system to trigger signs when debris is detected, saving vital time.

Used in tunnels and on highways, including in mountainous areas prone to landslips, debris detection improves the safety of any roadway.

Detects debris in seconds

ClearWay detects dangerous debris in seconds, saving vital minutes so warning signs can be set, lanes closed, and response teams deployed faster.

Precise location information

With Navtech's radar-based system, operators know the precise location of any debris.

Works in poor visibility

Radar works in all weather and light conditions: in fog, heavy rain, snow, complete darkness, and glare. It is in these conditions that accidents are more likely to happen and other technologies start to fail.

Multiple applications from one system

The same system can deliver debris detection alongside other AID and traffic data capabilities, such as on the 27km Transmission Gully Motorway in New Zealand, which opened in 2022.


Navtech’s Intelligent Transport System (ITS) will find a stopped vehicle or wrong-way driver in seconds so operators can get assistance to road users faster. The same system can provide further actionable data such as vehicle count and classification.

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