The Road to Safety Opens in the U.S.

FCC grants joint waiver request to deploy C-V2X technology
May 15, 2023 4:35 PM ET

OnQ Blog

Automakers, state departments of transportation (DOTs) and equipment manufacturers received good news today when the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) granted a waiver allowing them to begin operating cellular-vehicle-to-everything (C-V2X) technology on U.S. roadways.

C-V2X allows vehicles to communicate directly with each other, or vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V), roadside infrastructure, or vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) to have an immediate impact on road safety. In December 2021, several entities filed a joint waiver request to deploy this safety-enhancing technology as soon as possible.

Traffic fatalities reached a 16-year high in 2021 with an estimate of more than 42,000 fatalities caused by vehicle traffic crashes.1 Many of these deaths could be preventable. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that V2V safety applications could prevent or mitigate the severity of up to 80% of non-impaired crashes.2 Qualcomm is thrilled that industry stakeholders can now move forward with early-stage C-V2X deployments that will help to address this national safety crisis.

The waiver permits C-V2X deployments in the dedicated upper 20 MHz portion of the 5.9 GHz band, allowing automakers and road infrastructure owners and operators to begin integrating the technology into vehicles and road infrastructure. Meaning, stakeholders can now begin rolling out applications that can assist in immediate enhanced safety for all road users.

The following applications use C-V2X technology. These and others can improve road safety:

  • Red-light violation warning (RLVW) 
    More than half of all fatal and injury crashes happen at intersections.3 Drivers running red lights are the most common cause of all urban crashes, resulting in an average of seven fatalities and more than 1,000 injuries per day at signalized intersections across the country.4
  • Traffic signal preemption 
    Aimed at shortening emergency response time to help save lives, this preemption allows vehicles like ambulances and fire trucks to remotely trigger a green light. Related V2V applications share this information with nearby vehicles so drivers can take action to move out of the way, reducing congestion along the route to improve safety for first responders and road users alike.
  • Intersection movement assist (IMA) 
    Similar to RLVW, IMA safety applications can alert other drivers when there is a movement conflict at an intersection.
  • Do-Not-Pass Warning (DNPW) 
    Warns the driver that it is not safe to pass a slower-moving vehicle when vehicles are approaching from the opposite direction.

Next steps

The US Department of Transportation (USDOT) has committed to developing a roadmap for national V2X deployments and will convene the industry to discuss the path forward at a workshop titled “Continuing the Momentum Toward Nationwide Deployment” on April 28. In preparation for this workshop, the Intelligent Transportation Society of America (ITSA) prepared a National Deployment Plan that includes a call to action for state and local transportation agencies and related federal agencies, and outlines targets for OEM deployment. This is the kind of industry collaboration necessary to achieve broadscale deployment. Qualcomm looks forward to working with USDOT, ITSA, and other public and private sector stakeholders on a shared national deployment vision.

The recently announced Bipartisan Infrastructure Law also provides funding opportunities for programs geared at improving U.S. transportation infrastructure. To provide more visibility into these programs, the USDOT has published a list of upcoming notices of funding opportunities (NOFOs).

Qualcomm is committed to providing solutions that support the transportation industry with enhancing safety and traffic efficiency, learn more at

1. NHTSA announcement

2. NHTSA fact sheet