TRAFFIC SAFETY: TDOT selects new safety messages for overhead dynamic highway signs

March 8, 2016

The five messages address traffic safety concerns such as distracted driving, seatbelt usage, impaired driving and speeding. 

The Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) selected five winning messages out of 3,000 entries to appear on the state’s overhead Dynamic Message Signs.

The top five messages include:

1. “Turn signals, the original instant messaging.”
2. “Get the cell off your phone and drive.”
3. “Practice safe text. Don’t do it while driving.”
4. “You’re in Tennessee. Volunteer to drive safe.”
5. “Ain’t nobody got time for a wreck. Slow it down.”

The No. 1 winning message, “Turn signals, the original instant messaging”, will run on TDOT's overhead Dynamic Message Signs first. That message, along with the other winning messages, will be placed in rotation to run on the overhead Dynamic Message Signs statewide throughout the year. 

A total of 190 Dynamic Message Signs are located in the state’s four urban areas (Chattanooga, Knoxville, Memphis, Nashville), and in some rural areas across the state. The main purpose of the signs is to alert motorists of incidents, lane blockages, hazardous road conditions, or Amber Alerts.

In 2012, TDOT became the first agency in the nation to display roadway fatality numbers on the overhead signs. In addition to the fatality statistics, safety messages are displayed during off-peak travel times.

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