ADOT and Mexico are Working Together

Getting There

By Garin Groff of the Tribune
Mexico travelers can get Web updates
Arizona drivers have gotten pretty spoiled with all the real-time traffic information available on the 511 phone line or the Web. But that ends whenever we cross the border on trips to Mexico.

It’s already enough that we have to struggle with the language barrier and the metric system – but it’s more frustrating to not have all the information we’re so used to here.

That’s changing with a new Web-based system that alerts drivers to construction work and collisions that are tying up traffic.

The Arizona Department of Transportation worked with its counterpart agency in Mexico to build an online map that shows the same kind of things ADOT already does for Arizona.

It’s the first international project of its type in this nation.

ADOT set up the project after training transportation officials in the Mexican state of Sonora to post information on Arizona’s Web site, www.az511. com.

You can find the link to the postings from Sonora at www.az511.gov/Sonora. The map shows highways in southern Arizona and Sonora.

It lists construction projects or events that could slow drivers. It even lists severe weather or collisions. The postings also are in English and Spanish.

The information from Sonora isn’t as extensive as what’s available in parts of Arizona, said ADOT spokeswoman Diane D’Angelo.

Sonora lacks the roadway sensors or cameras that Arizona transportation officials have used to monitor highways, so the Sonora map won’t have as much real-time information. But D’Angelo said officials in Sonora will get some real-time information from law enforcement officers that can be put online.

“Obviously, we’re in the infancy stages of this and it will get better,” she said.

ADOT is looking to add the Sonora information on the 511 phone line that drivers can already use to get information about Arizona travel. Officials are still trying to figure out the best way to get information on the phone, D’Angelo said.

“You are dealing with accents and Spanish pronunciations of Mexican towns,” she said. “Do we call it Rocky Point, or do we call it Puerto Penasco?”

ADOT is also looking to add real-time information on how long the wait is at border crossings. That capability should come in a few months.

Rocky Point Shuttle
www.eastvalleytribune.com

Information posted by Shea Peil at seasideshea@gmail.com  

Be Sociable, Share!