No alert from TXDOT? You aren't alone

Posted at 6:58 PM, Mar 10, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-11 11:33:13-05

If you are waiting for a text from Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), you'll have to keep waiting. The agency says their message alert system has been temporarily stalled.

Last month, the transportation agency launched a new text message subscription service to keep drivers informed of closures and delays. Yesterday, drivers reported waiting in traffic for hours after accidents shut down part of I-35.

Salado resident and business owner Ted Williamson says he could have avoided the backups if he would have gotten one the texts he signed up for.

"I was fortunate to get off at 24-84 after basically driving one mile in two and a half hours," Williamson said.

Stuck in traffic, Williamson got out of the car and started talking to other drivers.

"We were all comparing notes on our text messages we had all signed up correctly. I have AT&T, some had Verizon, some had T-Mobile. Nobody saw a message," he said.

Jodi Wheatley, a representative from TxDOT, acknowledges the problem, saying that the messages have been blocked by the wireless networks.

"When we rolled out the program, 1,100 people signed up in the first ten hours and now have over 2,000 subscribers," Wheatley said. 

When they attempted to send the messages, they were viewed as spam. 

"We are working on fixing the problem and have more numbers to text from," she said.

Wheatley says drivers can use several other mediums to find out about delays and accidents. 

TxDOT offers real-time updates on their website, Twitter and email alerts.

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