Ever Call 5-1-1? WA Travel Information Line Goes Away in May
Since its beginning just over 20 years ago, the 5-1-1 travel line gave WA drivers (and other travelers) updates on road conditions, weather, emergencies, and other data. But now it's going away in May.
Service is to be discontinued in May
According to sources at the state level and information from MyNorthwest.com, the service has become too expensive to operate vs. the results.
5-1-1 began in March of 1999 when the U.S. Department of Transportation and other federal agencies requested the creation of a three-digit national travel update service.
5-1-1 went into effect across the country over the next few years. However, according to officials, in WA state the service has dropped from over 2.2 million calls in 2009 to just 302,000 in 2022.
Officials say it's due to sophisticated tech and updates people can get on their phones or elsewhere, and the service costs too much. It costs at least $150,000 a year to operate and staffing is required to update the service as quickly and often as possible.
You've probably seen the roadsigns, after May 18th, they will start coming down.
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