South Dakota has a traveler information system called the Advanced Traveler and Weather Information System (ATWIS). This system is now accessed by dialing #SAFE on cellular telephones only. Information is also available by land line via four telephone numbers available throughout the state that provide traveler information. To permit statewide 511 to replace these existing systems, decisions need to be made regarding what information will be available via 511, who will pay for them, and what funding mechanisms exist.
Research is needed to investigate technical and institutional issues associated with establishing and operating 511 statewide in South Dakota. The research would address concerns of phone and cellular providers, state and local agencies, and the traveling public at large. The work would produce a plan for practical deployment of 511 in the state.
Title: Statewide 511 Traveler Information Number
Project Researcher: Jon Becker, DOT
Project Manager: Dave Huft
Research Period: 1/1/2002 - 6/30/2002
Problem Statement: The Federal Communications Commission has established 511 as the national phone number for travel information. Like 911, which has been established for emergencies, 511 would be uniformly accessible throughout the country. Unlike 911, the responsibility for defining, establishing, and operating the 511 system is not clearly identified. The Department of Transportation is the most logical choice for leading the state's 511 initiative, but establishing 511 statewide will require coordination with a large number of phone and cellular providers and other state and local agencies.