A social milestone: ADOT Twitter account eclipses 100,000 followers

Since 2008, @ArizonaDOT has driven a conversation with motorists

PHOENIX – Since Sept. 16, 2008, more and more people have looked to the Arizona Department of Transportation’s Twitter account, @ArizonaDOT, for essential information on traffic conditions, answers to questions about routes and the occasional tongue-in-cheek suggestion that Sasquatches might have been spotted along a highway.

On Monday, ADOT surpassed 100,000 followers on Twitter, joining Washington state as the only state DOTs with more than 100,000 followers. @ArizonaDOT is also the most followed government account in Arizona.

ADOT’s Twitter presence has grown rapidly since the agency stationed public information officers in its Traffic Operations Center 20 hours a day, seven days a week, including holidays. Nearly 90,000 tweets have been sent, giving drivers up-to-the-minute traffic updates, route options and travel safety tips.

While travelers can get the most current information about highway closures and restrictions by visiting ADOT’s Travel Information Site at AZ511.gov or calling 511, Twitter allows for a more human touch and two-way communication.

“Innovation is central to ADOT’s mission, and using Twitter to connect directly with the public is no different,” ADOT Director John Halikowski said. “Whether it’s new technology to monitor bridges or providing better customer service via social media, ADOT will continue to use the latest tools to advance the agency.”

Besides tweeting information on crashes, weather events and innovations from ADOT’s Motor Vehicle Division, @ArizonaDOT answers dozens of questions from drivers every day. Motorists also provide valuable information to ADOT. Since ADOT workers can’t see what is happening on all 7,000 miles of Arizona’s highways, drivers are additional eyes and ears for the agency.

From a long traffic backup to a great experience at the MVD to debris on the road, members of the public share their experiences with all aspects of the Arizona Department of Transportation, offering feedback that helps the agency improve its services.

However, no feedback is worth tweeting while driving. Not only it is illegal in several cities, it’s always unsafe. Please tweet responsibly.

For a look back at some of ADOT’s more memorable tweets, search for “Twitter” on the ADOT blog at www.azdot.gov/adot-blog.

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