Illinois Tollway launches Twitter notifications for delays, accidents
|Rain keeps drivers alert on eastbound I-355 the Wednesday before a recent Thanksgiving. This week, the Illinois Tollway is launching Twitter alerts to keep drivers informed of incidents and delays. (Photo by Bill Ackerman)|
The Illinois Tollway has launched an instant update service via Twitter in time for the holiday weekend.
Starting Tuesday, drivers can sign up to receive real-time information about the type of incident, the location by nearest crossroad and milepost and the impact of traffic, such as lane closures.
Each of the four tollways — the Tri-State Tollway (I-94/I-294/I-80), Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90), Reagan Memorial Tollway (I-88) and the Veterans Memorial Tollway (I-355) — will have an individual Twitter feed, according to a press release from the Tollway.
Drivers looking to sign up can go to the Tollway’s website, www.illinoistollway.com, and click on the Tollway Trip Tweets “Follow Us” button. Or they can sign up directly through Twitter for any of the four accounts: “Tollway Trip 90”; “Tollway Trip 94/294”; “Tollway Trip 88”; “Tollway Trip 355.”
The release from the Tollway emphasized that the service is not intended for travelers while they are behind the wheel. Illinois law bars emailing, texting or tweeting while driving.
The information is issued from the agency’s traffic operations center in Downers Grove. Using a system of more than 200 closed-circuit televisions and 127 traffic sensors, the center’s traffic and incident management system issues immediate notices of traffic conditions, according to the Tollway’s announcement.
Meanwhile, roads this Thanksgiving weekend are gearing up to be more crowded than before. About 600,000 more drivers are expected to take to the road this year than in 2011, according to AAA. The agency is predicting 43.6 million Americans will travel more than 50 miles from their homes, 90 percent of them driving.
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