— What are Destination Dynamic Message Signs?
Destination Dynamic Message Signs look like regular green highway guide signs and can display dynamically changing travel times in minutes in the small black LED panel inserts. Currently, there are not many of these signs in Ohio. Two have been installed on I-75 between Dayton and Cincinnati and one east of Columbus on I-70 westbound. Current DDMS messages are viewable on BuckeyeTraffic.org and are displayed with custom icons for DDMS. Although the messages appear to be entirely electronic like full size DMS, the static information is really on the green extrusheet sign while the dynamic travel time minutes change via the electronic LED panels (shown below)
Like the travel times on normal DMS, motorists can use these signs to get an idea of approximately how long it will take them to get to certain destinations based on the current conditions. For the sign example above, the number of minutes is the same as the number of miles to get to SR-63 as well as I-275, therefore indicating that the current traffic traveling on this road is moving at approximately 60 MPH or about free-flow conditions. If the number of minutes was equal to the number of miles to get to SR-63, but considerably higher than the number of miles to get to I-275, this would indicate there may be congestion somewhere between SR-63 and I-275 and motorists should expect delays or consider using an alternate route.
I-75 SB at Montgomery/Warren County Line I-75 NB at Kyle Station Rd I-70 WB at CR-42/Watkins Rd
— What if there is a road incident?
Contrary to DMS, DDMS can only display travel time information - no information regarding traffic conditions or road incidents can be conveyed by DDMS. By default, DDMS are in operation 24/7.
In the case that the road is closed ahead, operators will replace the number of minutes with a flashing "CLD" message, in which case numerical travel times would be irrelevant. The flashing "CLD" message trys to get motorists attention to inform that the road is closed ahead. If the road is closed before the 1st travel time destination on the sign, the flashing “CLD” message will be placed on both panels. If the road is closed between the two travel time destinations on the sign, the flashing “CLD” message will be placed on only the 2nd panel, indicating that the travel time to the first destination is still applicable but motorists will be unable to reach the second destination until the road is reopened by incident responders (example shown below).
— What if no minutes are displayed on the DDMS?
In the event that nothing is displayed in electronic section of the sign to give travel times, motorists should not think that the road is closed. This indicates that there is a problem with being able to send the travel time minutes to the sign (could be a power outage or other type of problem). ODOT knows about these problems and will get the sign working again as soon as possible.