How to Find Driving Conditions

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Finding updated driving conditions prevents travel delays.
Finding updated driving conditions prevents travel delays. (Image: Thomas Northcut/Photodisc/Getty Images)

Local driving conditions frequently change, especially in or near large metropolitan areas. Variables such as precipitation, accidents, construction and high traffic volume can cause your drive to take longer than normal. Traffic reports inform you of any driving delays in your area, helping you plan accordingly before and during your trip. Keep informed by finding these reports via television, Internet and telephone, even if you are away from home.

Watch a local television news broadcast. Local stations often couple a weather forecast with the current driving conditions in your area, especially during rush hour periods in the morning and evening.

Visit the Traffic.com (traffic.com) homepage. Enter your destination points inside the text boxes at the top of the homepage. Click “Go.” A brief description of the current driving conditions for your trip appears on the next page. The description includes the distance, estimated travel time, roadwork or construction and traffic congestion in that area.

Go to the National Traffic and Road Closure Information page on the Federal Highway Administration (fhwa.dot.gov) website. A map of the United States is on the homepage. Click on your state to bring up a new page that contains links for popular roadways and major cities. Choose one of the links to find driving conditions, including construction reports, traffic and current weather for that particular roadway or city.

Dial “511” on your home or cell phone. The “511” service offers automated traffic updates for your region. The reports update at least once an hour or whenever a noteworthy event, such as an accident, occurs. Listen carefully to the options after you've dialed “511,” as the categories vary per location.

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