Rapidly Changing Weather Makes Communication Vital for Safe Travel #iatraffic
AMES, Iowa – Feb. 21, 2013; 1 p.m. update – The National Weather Service is reporting that snowfall rates of 1 to 2 inches per hour can be expected during the late afternoon and evening hours in southern and central Iowa, with much of the expected snowfall to occur in six hours or less.
Strong east winds at 15 to 25 mph with higher gusts to around 30 mph are also expected. The winds will combine with the heavy snowfall to create widespread visibility of less than one quarter of a mile by later this afternoon into the evening. Dangerous travel conditions are expected this afternoon through much of tonight. The storms will likely have a significant impact on rush hour traffic.
The Iowa Department of Transportation offers traveler information anytime by visiting www.511ia.org, or calling 511 (within Iowa) or 800-288-1047 (nationwide).
If you would like to be part of the conversation, the Iowa DOT continues to urge travelers to provide feedback on Twitter and Facebook. Travelers who are stopped in a safe location are asked to take a moment to share observations and experiences.
Throughout the storm, while stopped in a safe location, use social media to connect with the Iowa DOT.
- Geotag photos and video: All smartphones have GPS because of enhanced 911 service. If you are a social media user who likes to share photos and video during winter storms, be sure the geotagging feature on your mobile device is enabled. Then the location of where your photo or video was taken will be tagged.
- Follow us: All traffic-related news releases and traffic incident reports are posted on the Iowa DOT’s Twitter accounts. Search for either @iowadot or @statewideia511.
- Use the traffic hashtag: The Iowa DOT is using the hashtag #iatraffic during this event and recommends that other Twitter users do the same to find relevant Tweets using that key phrase.
- Tell us what you are seeing: Your information could be invaluable to others who are considering travel. You can also be another set of eyes for the Iowa DOT. When posting to Twitter reference @iowadot in your post. Tag us in your posts and photos on Facebook.
The Iowa DOT will be monitoring social media conversation during this event and using the public’s observations to help direct resources to problem areas. Being part of the traffic information social media network, as either a follower or contributor, enhances everyone’s safety.