Road Signs and Markings

Transport written question – answered on 8th September 2014.

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Photo of Peter Luff Peter Luff Conservative, Mid Worcestershire

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what steps he is taking to ensure that motorway information signs convey information that is up-to-date and accurate.

Photo of John Hayes John Hayes Minister of State (Department for Transport)

In response to a Department for Transport performance measure, the Highways Agency has prepared an Information Plan for 2014-15. The plan sets out a series of actions to look at quality and accuracy of information it provides through its traffic information services, including motorway information signs.

By improving data flow and processing, the Highways Agency will improve the quality and timeliness of all information services. A new system to be used in the Highways Agency’s National Traffic Operations Centre is currently being tested. This system has been specifically designed to assist operational staff in more accurately locating incidents and responding to the effects of an incident. The improvements, which will be delivered in early 2015, will ensure more timely and accurate information on variable message signs as well as other information services such as smartphones and websites.

Additionally, information relating to estimated travel times between strategic junctions will be improved. Interfaces to other systems are also being enhanced to provide more timely information such as weather information which may cause disruption to drivers.

Alongside technology changes, the Information Plan is making use of improved customer knowledge. Using their recently established customer panel, the Highways Agency gathers views about how people want to receive information and how they interpret the messages the Highways Agency displays. This knowledge will inform future developments of our information services.

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