Highway Advisory Radio (HAR) can provide route diversion information during periods of congestion when phone and internet travel advisory systems are not available; benefit-to-cost ratios can range from 4:1 to 16:1 assuming a 5 to 20 percent compliance rate.
Survey of departments of transportation using highway advisory radio and benefit-cost analysis for Florida's Turnpike Enterprise.
Made Public Date


United States


United States

Using Agency Surveys and Benefit-Cost Analysis to Evaluate Highway Advisory Radio as Regional Traveler Information and Communication Tool

Summary Information

Highway advisory radio (HAR) is an older strategy for disseminating traveler information, but it is still valuable for regional traveler information, especially in emergencies. To understand the continuing benefits of HAR, two online surveys were conducted with state department of transportation officials throughout the United States as well as emergency management officials in Florida. A detailed cost-benefit analysis was also conducted using customer surveys from Florida’s Turnpike Enterprise.


Based on the online surveys of state department of transportation and emergency management, ongoing benefits of HAR include:
  • Provides more detail than other traveler information services, especially when detailed messages need to be shared with people in a large area
  • Redundancy in the case of problems with phone- or internet-based traveler information systems
  • Supplementing messages on dynamic message signs (DMSs)
  • Accessing information does not require drivers’ take their eyes off the road
Assuming 5 to 20 percent of HAR congestion messages cause diversion, the estimated range of the HAR benefit-cost ratio was 4.02 to 16.08. These benefits may be even greater if they considered use in emergencies was considered as well as reductions in fuel consumption and emissions.