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Highway Hotline: There's an app for that!

New look and features plus new app, among the highlights for the well-utilized site that updates drivers on road conditions in Saskatchewan.
Here is a look at the graphics on the new Highway Hotline app released on Wednesday.

REGINA - The well-known Highway Hotline website got a noticeable facelift this week.

The website that updates travellers on road conditions in Saskatchewan saw some new graphics and new features, including a route planning feature. It is also now available as a mobile app on Google Play and the Apple Store.

"I'm so excited about this new version of the Highway Hotline," Highways Minister Jeremy Cockrill said in a news release. "It's got all the same trusted highway and road information, in a sleek new package people will love."

The Highway Hotline website is well-used by Saskatchewan drivers, with over 6.5 million visits annually. It is particularly well used during the winter months, when travel conditions on highways can be particularly dicey.

"As Saskatchewan's trusted advocate on road user safety, we encourage drivers to check the Saskatchewan Highway Hotline for updates on road conditions," CAA Saskatchewan Director of Corporate Communications Christine Niemczyk said in a statement. 

"We include the Saskatchewan Highway Hotline in our safety messaging because we know the weather in our province can change quickly. It's important to adapt our driving behaviour to the current weather and road conditions, and to rely on resources such as the Saskatchewan Highway Hotline to help keep all road users safe.”

Carrot River Valley MLA Fred Bradshaw spoke at length about the new and improved Highway Hotline in the legislature on Wednesday afternoon. Here are his full remarks as recorded in Hansard:

Mr. Bradshaw: — “Mr. Speaker, there’s an app for just about everything these days. And I’m pleased to say that now includes Saskatchewan’s Highway Hotline. That’s right, Mr. Speaker, you can now download the Highway Hotline mobile app for free through Google Play and the Apple store. Updates include additional functions, cleaner graphics, and an expanded route-planning feature that includes road conditions.

“Mr. Speaker, the Highway Hotline began nearly 50 years ago as a phone-based service that provided information about road conditions. It has since evolved into a phone- and web-based service that shares information about highway conditions, road closures, construction zones, ferries, and border crossings.

“It features a network of more than 40 cameras on our highways and airports, providing real-time, current images of weather and highway conditions which help travellers make informed decisions about safety.

“Mr. Speaker, as you know, driving through the prairies can be unpredictable and depending on the weather, sometimes less than desirable. That’s why the Highway Hotline is so valuable. I want to thank all of our highway employees for the work they do, especially our Nipawin crew which does an amazing job. In appreciation of their efforts I took them out for dinner last Friday night, setting a precedent for our new Highways minister. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.”