Wed, Jan 27, 2010 - Page 2 News List

Holiday motorists can check traffic conditions by phone

By Shelley Shan  /  STAFF REPORTER

Motorists traveling during the nine-day Lunar New Year holiday will be able to check live broadcasts of freeway traffic on their mobile phones, the Taiwan Area National Freeway Bureau said yesterday.

Kang Jhy-fu (康志福), director of the traffic management department at the National Freeway Bureau, said more people now access the Internet through their mobile phones, so the department is making its intelligent transportation system (ITS) available via this medium.

Until now, updated traffic reports have been available via radio, television and a voice query system, as well as on the bureau’s Web sites and on LED displays installed along freeways.

The bureau also announced that it is offering traffic forecasts during the nine-day holiday.

Kang said that the forecast would give travelers some idea about when to hit the road to avoid traffic.

The forecast will include the times and road sections where heavy traffic is likely to appear, as well as the estimated traffic volumes for that day and the days ahead.

For the Lunar New Year holiday, the bureau said that travelers would see heavy traffic on Feb. 16 and Feb. 17, the third and the fourth days of the holiday. The heaviest traffic may occur on Feb. 17, with expected traffic volume hitting 3 million vehicles.

Meanwhile, Centers for Disease Control Spokesman Shih Wen-yi (施文儀) said yesterday that free A(H1N1) flu vaccines will be available at Taipei Railway Station, Taipei Bus Station (交九轉運站) and the international airports in Taipei, Taoyuan, Taichung and Kaohsiung between Feb. 1 and Feb. 13, as a number of Taiwanese businesspeople living in China will be traveling back to Taiwan for the holidays.

Shih said the Taipei Railway Station and Taipei Bus Station vaccine service booths would be open from 8am to 8pm, while booths at the international airports will be open from 9am to 9pm.

Elsewhere, the Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) announced that airlines would start selling tickets today for additional flights to Shanghai, Hangzhou, Ningbo and Shenzhen during the holiday.

CAA Deputy Director General Lin Shinn-der (林信得) said that China Airlines, EVA Air, Uni Air and Mandarin Air will sell tickets to the four cities and other Chinese cities online. ­TransAsia Airways has yet to confirm its schedule.

Between Feb. 1 and Feb. 28, Taiwanese airlines will offer a total of 100 additional cross-strait flights. Chinese airlines will offer 287 flights in addition to their regular schedules.

ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY JIMMY CHUANG

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