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EDITIONS
 Tuesday, 7 January, 2003, 12:02 GMT
Text alert service for M4 jams
Traffic jam
The service will tell drivers of any road congestion
A state-of-the-art text service to warn drivers about possible traffic problems on the M4 in south Wales has been launched.

Traffic-Wales will provide a free text messaging and e-mail notification of road congestion along the motorway once it crosses into Wales from England.

Users will receive automatic notifications of accidents, delays and speed restrictions likely to affect their journey

Sue Essex, Minister for the Environment

Users are asked to set up a profile of their journey on the scheme's website - they then receive automatic alerts of any problems along the route.

But officials have stressed the service, which is designed to help journey planning, should not encourage the use of mobile phones while driving.

The scheme has been launched as part of the Welsh Assembly Government's Intelligent Transport System, which manages Wales's major roads.

Environment Minister Sue Essex said M4 users needed to complete a personal profile about which sections they use and at what times of day.

"Once registered, users will receive automatic notifications of accidents, delays and speed restrictions likely to affect their journey.

The service is designed to advise drivers of problems before they set off on their journeys

Sue Essex, Environment Minister

"The service is designed to advise drivers of problems before they set off on their journeys.

"While I urge motorists to sign up for the new service, remember that mobile phones should never be used while driving.

"Once on the road, electronic signs will keep drivers informed of any developments," she said.

The scheme is being coordinated by two traffic control centres in Newport and Conwy through loops in the road which measure the amount of traffic on the roads and CCTV.

Tailored

Andy Wainwright, Information Manager for Traffic-Wales, said the service could be tailored to the individual's needs.

"You can profile what information you want to receive, like certain journey times or between specific junctions," he said.

"We also gather and pass on information about the other major roads in Wales which we can alert the public about through this service.

"This is a good way of planning your journey beforehand," he added.


More from south east Wales

More from south west Wales
See also:

26 Dec 02 | England
24 Dec 02 | England
26 Nov 02 | England
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