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VDOT traffic operations center offers eye on road conditions

VDOT traffic operations center offers eye on road conditions (Image 1) (Copyright by WSLS - All rights reserved)

SALEM, VA (WSLS) - When you're on the road, VDOT is watching.

"Really just keeping an eye on things and being able to verify and provide that real-time traffic information," said VDOT Spokesman Jason Bond.

It's high-tech traffic operation center in Salem allows controllers to watch what's happening on hundreds of miles of roads and three districts, far southwest Virginia, Salem and Lynchburg.

"They cover about a third of the state. They're mostly along the major corridors like interstate 81, I-77. The cameras you see on 511 are also the ones you see here."

120 cameras provide a view of road conditions and potential accidents. The hub is where workers coordinate crews to clear roads of snow or control traffic in case of an accident when calls for help come in.

These are also the people here 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year to let you know of any potential delays before you head out or while you're stuck through the agency's phone, web or smartphone app known as Virginia 511.

"511 is the best source for real-time traffic information for drivers so if they are going to plan their trips or encounter delays, 511 one is going to have information," Bond said.

They also put the information up on message boards you drive past across the area.