For truck drivers wanting to check on traffic conditions in South Auckland the answer is as simple as flicking on the radio.
Launched in early March a short-range radio service, called 102.2 OnRouteFM, is being trialled to give drivers better travel information while they are on the move. The trial will run until 1 September 2017 and is a joint initiative from the NZ Transport Agency and Auckland Transport.
The broadcast area covers the Southern Motorway from Takanini to Mt Wellington, State Highway 20, 20B and 20A, as well as arterial roads in south and east Auckland.
“According to customer research, most Auckland drivers don’t check traffic conditions before they start their journey and often rely on sources available on route, which have some limitations”, says Rua Pani, Manager of the Auckland Transport Operations Centre which is running the trial.
“This trial is testing the concept of a dedicated radio service designed to give motorists on route detailed and up to date information on things that might impact their current or future journey, especially for those who drive alone and can’t look at their mobile phones.”
The information broadcast will include updates on crashes and other incidents along with relevant civil defence emergency or warning messages, advisories about current and future roadworks plus public events that might affect people’s travel plans, along with some public transport information and messages focused on driver behaviour.
“Customers have expressed a strong appetite for this kind of service and it’s worked well overseas, so we’re really excited to see how people embrace it here,” Rua says.
Pre-recorded messages can be heard 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Live updates on incidents affecting the transport network will be available during peak commuter times of 6am to 7pm, Monday to Friday. There will also be messages on behalf of NZ Police and Auckland Civil Defence and Emergency Management who are participating in the trial.
It’s also important to be aware 102.2 OnRoute FM can be heard outside the advertised broadcast area but audibility degrades due to lower signal strength. Further, messages on-air will include updates about activity outside of the broadcast area as appropriate, as we know many listeners will be travelling further afield.