There’s no blizzard in Kansas today – 511 Traveler Information map is being tested

The weather in Kansas should be sunny and cool today – but you wouldn’t know that by looking at the Kansas Department of Transportation’s 511 Traveler Information map (511.ksdot.org).

The 511 map will undergo a live simulation test from about 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. to test its ability to handle a large number of information requests when the entire state highway system has snow and ice conditions. KDOT officials were prepared to delay the test if winter weather was striking some part of the state.

During the test, travelers will still be able to see real construction/incident information, KDOT spokeswoman Barb Blue said in a prepared statement. However, this information may not display as the stress point of information is approached.

Users may turn off the snow and ice condition colors by un-checking “Roadway Weather Conditions” in the legend on the left side of the map. The real highway information will be available in the “Driving Conditions List” link at the top of the map and will be listed separately from the simulated snow and ice conditions.

Travelers who call the 511 system will be informed of the test and reporting of road conditions during the test by an introductory message. Current road work activities and incidents will be reported on 511 as these reports won’t be affected by the test. Travelers can access the 511 phone system by calling 5-1-1 from anywhere in Kansas or 1-866-KDOT (5368) from anywhere in the U.S.

Blue said the simulation is necessary to test new enhancements to the site and to ensure reliable service during inclement winter weather.