London's transport network - which includes, buses, underground and overground trains, taxis, boats and road traffic - is a pretty complex beast, and it's no simple task to keep millions of people moving around the city. The London Underground is also the oldest subterranean rail network in the world, and now carries over 1.3 billion passengers per year.
Inevitably, disruption occurs - but Transport for London (TfL) is keen to explore new ways to keep passengers informed when it does. Today, it announced a new pilot scheme to do just that.
TfL said it's "worked closely with Twitter" on the new system to provide alerts to passengers about major disruption that could affect their journeys, by sending them notifications via direct messages (DMs).
The trial launches today for passengers on the London Underground Central and District lines, as well as the London Overground network and TfL Rail services. Anyone can sign up to test the new system, as TfL explained today on its Digital Blog:
- Visit our webpage http://tfl.gov.uk/twitter-alerts and log in with your Twitter account
- Click on the ‘Get alerts’ button for the lines you would like to get notifications for
- If you would like to have alerts for your commute only, click on ‘Edit my alerts’, from here you will be able to choose days and times of the week (our default commute time is Mon-Fri 7-10am and 4-7pm)
If serious disruption occurs on one of the lines involved in the pilot, subscribers will receive a DM letting them know that they should consider an alternative route.
Noting that TfL has been working with the social network for several years to help keep travellers moving around London, Twitter's Sam Hodges said today that "the introduction of our personalised Direct Message service takes it to the next level and means you’ll always be amongst the very first to know if there are issues affecting your commute."
In addition to the pilot program, Transport for London says it will continue to offer its numerous Twitter feeds to help keep passengers informed on the latest travel updates from around the city.
Source: Transport for London