The state has a new system to alert drivers about any delays they might encounter along interstates and other highways.
The Department of Transportation has launched a new 511 system which can be accessed by phone or wireless device. Drivers can dial 5-1-1, then select “traffic information” to find out about accidents, heavy traffic, or construction along their route.
The commands will use voice-recognition software, so callers can say the route for which they want information. Tony Sheppard is the agency’s Director of Traffic Engineering. He says the system will cover all of the state’s interstates, along with certain state highways that resemble interstates, such as SC 277 in Columbia and SC 22 in the Grand Strand.
The agency also has a new website, 511sc.org, that provides the same information. Sheppard says the site is very easy to use.
When you go to the site, you will get an outline of the state that’s broken up into regions. You can click on the region that you’d like to be pulling the information from and then it will drill down onto a map. You select on that map if you want incidents, construction, or just other items that are occurring on the roadway.
The regions are divided into Piedmont, Midlands, Pee Dee, and Lowcountry.
Sheppard says a feature on the website. called my511, allows you to personalize an alert system for your own drive to work.
Say you drive a particular route each day on the interstate between a certain time. You can select that route for those times. And, it will actually alert you by either a phone call, text message, or an email to let you know that, “hey, there’s something going on along this route.”
Although any calls are free, normal phone or texting rates will apply for the my511 alerts.