Point of view of a person using the cellphone while driving

The state of Tennessee offers a program called Tennessee 511 that notifies drivers of potential hazards, delays, and road conditions via mobile phone or website. Drivers can see hazards and conditions listed on the site, along with a view from a live camera, speed data, and messages on the overhead lighting system. The goal is to help drivers stay aware of and avoid dangers whenever possible, thus preventing accidents.

You can type in www.tn511.com on your mobile device or call 511 from your phone to get the latest information.


The Tennessee 511 system provides essential information for drivers planning travel on state routes, U.S. routes, and interstate highways throughout Tennessee. The 511 system also provides transit, tourist, and airport information. When calling the 511-phone service, you can request to hear about road conditions and closures for specific routes.

Callers also have access to the statewide road conditions map and the TDOT SmartWay cameras in the Memphis, Nashville, Chattanooga, and Knoxville metropolitan areas from www.TN511.com.

The 511 system notifies drivers about important traffic information, including:

  • Traffic incidents and major closures on interstates, U.S. routes, and state routes in Tennessee
  • Road construction and planned road closures on interstates, U.S. routes, and state routes
  • Statewide weather conditions
  • Rest areas and welcome center locations
  • Transfers to public transportation
  • Transfers to commercial airports
  • Transfers to the Tennessee Department of Tourism
  • Transfers to neighboring states’ 511 phone systems (currently in Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, and Virginia)
  • AMBER Alerts

The 511 system provides updates every five minutes so you have the most up-to-date information to plan your travel accordingly.


The more information that drivers have at their fingertips through programs like Tennessee’s 511, the better informed they can be of hazardous conditions on our state’s roads.

Being aware of inclement weather, construction zones, and accidents can help ensure that drivers take extra precautions while on the road. Knowing potential hazards that lie ahead of you while driving can and does save lives and prevents injuries.

The state touts the benefits of Tennessee 511 as:

  • Simple to use from a phone (landline or mobile)
  • Available 24/7
  • Information can be accessed while on-the-go
  • Accessible by voice recognition and hands-free use
  • Providing accurate and up-to-date traffic conditions
  • Notification of delays from construction or traffic
  • Providing dependable, route-specific information for commuting or planning trips


Like most modern systems, you can issue commands using voice-activation or by touch-tone on the Tennessee 511 phone system. You will be given a menu of options when you dial 511. The following is the message that you will receive from the main menu:

  • I can give you information on: Traffic Conditions, Weather Forecasts, Rest Areas, Public Transportation, Airports, Tourism, or transfer you to another 511 system.
  • To leave a comment about the system say, “Leave a comment.”
  • You can always press 0 (zero) for touch-tone options.
  • If this is an emergency, please hang up and call 911.
  • To get a complete list of everything you can do, say, “what are my choices” or say “help.”
  • Now, what can I get you?


When using the 511 mobile app, you get the same traffic updates and information that are on the website. All of this information is readily accessible at your fingertips on your mobile device.

The app features you should know about include:

  • The app has two modes: basic and passenger.
  • The driver can simply activate the app in basic mode and begin driving.
  • Basic mode is designed to give audio information to the driver. This includes accident reports and construction alerts a few miles ahead of the vehicle.
  • While in “passenger mode,” the app provides both audio and visual information.


The SmartWay website provides up-to-date traffic information on Tennessee roads. This system includes TN511, the HELP program, and the Intelligent Transportation System. The SmartWay system also includes four transportation management centers, 517 cameras, 174 message signs, 1,015 roadway detection systems, and 49 video detection systems in the four major metropolitan areas of Tennessee.

  • The Transportation Management Centers (TMC) serve as focal points for traffic management operations and communications in Memphis, Nashville, Chattanooga, and Knoxville.
  • The TN511 is a voice-activated phone system that provides up to date traffic information about conditions on Tennessee roadways as well as weather information from the National Weather Service.
  • The HELP Freeway Service Patrols help traffic congestion by taking care of minor accidents and incidents in a timely fashion
  • The Camera Video Surveillance system monitors crowded freeways and provides incident management capabilities.
  • The Radar Detection System is a device that is used to monitor traffic flow and assists with calculating times for routes.
  • The Video Detection System consists of video devices used to monitor the flow of traffic and show travel times for routes.
  • The Roadway Traffic Sensors report the traffic counts, speeds, and travel time for commuters.


While programs like 511 can help drivers avoid potential hazards on the road, no program will prevent all accidents from occurring. If you are hurt in an accident in Tennessee, attorney David E. Gordon has the skill and experience you need on your side.

David is one of fewer than 2 percent of lawyers in Tennessee who are board certified by the Tennessee Supreme Court. He is actively involved in every case and is well-known for his compassion for his clients.

If experience, compassion, and a track record of success matter to you, then make sure to call The Law Office of David E. Gordon to schedule a free consultation. Call (901) 244-4483, use the online chat feature on his site, or fill out a contact form for a free consultation to discuss your accident today.

The Law Offices of David E. Gordon

The Law Offices of David E. Gordon