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Local app makes the roads safer these holidays

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GoMetro Traffic is a new locally-developed app for smartphones aimed at getting holiday travellers to their destinations safely. The mobile application is designed to provide drivers with incident and alert information before they set off on a road-trip.

It is expected that thousands of holidaymakers will be using South African roads this weekend to get to their holiday destinations. Traffic accidents and incidents can cause long delays to holiday trips, resulting in frustration for the travelling public. The trip planning information available in GoMetro Traffic can make South African roads safer this Holiday Season, by keeping drivers informed and allowing them enough time in a trip.

The GoMetro Traffic app puts traffic news and updates in your pocket, warning you about incidents ahead of you, so that you can choose an alternative route, or give yourself the time you need to get to your holiday destination without issue. Beyond accident or incident information along a chosen route, alerts include every Stop-Go on South Africa’s road network, as well as toll plaza queue lengths and waiting times at each toll plaza. Drivers can also be kept abreast of key passes being closed due to adverse weather conditions.

To stay informed about traffic incidents, users download the app from their app store, register their details, and then save their planned trip origin and destination. GoMetro Traffic monitors your planned route for any incoming traffic alerts, and will send you a push notification if there is an issue along your route, even if the app is closed. GoMetro makes use of accident statistics to identify high-risk driving times, and will remind drivers to be cautious during these times or even suggest they plan their trip for a safer travelling time.

Justin Coetzee of GoMetro explains what makes GoMetro Traffic different from other traffic alert applications. “We observed that other traffic applications are focused on navigation, and require a user to keep their GPS on all the time in order to receive traffic information. Obviously, this kills battery life and can overheat your phone. Our app doesn’t waste battery life because we don’t use your GPS to send contextual traffic alerts, rather using a saved trip card. We also don’t want to distract you while you are driving, so simply save a trip card and we use the info you have shared with us to determine when to send you a push message about a traffic incident.”

GoMetro has partnered with TrafficNet to develop and launch the app – working around the clock to be ready for the holiday season. Rob Byrne of TrafficNet explains the reason behind the collaboration with GoMetro, saying “Our TrafficSA Twitter account grew very quickly to almost 200,000 followers, many of whom are continually asking us for relevant traffic information. We realized that the existing apps on smartphones were focused more on on-trip navigation, and not contextual traffic information. This need led us to collaborate with GoMetro on providing a trip-planning app for drivers.”

The app is available for download in the Apple App Store for iOS, and will be available in the Google Play Store in the next few days. It is a free download, however standard data rates may apply.