The map app finds your location and shows the road conditions in the area.

The Traveler Information App, better known as the “map app” is now available from the State Transportation Department. They have developed it to give people an idea of how clear the larger roads in the state are as the weather gets bad this winter. Department Spokesman Matt Hiebert says the application gives a map of the state, with all the major roads highlighted. They’re color coded to indicate road conditions or construction.

He says those working in the field update the conditions of the road by radioing back to MoDOT headquarters, and the status is changed within five minutes. It shows major roads and highways, but also some smaller roads.

The app is free for iPhone and Android phones. Hiebert says this app should not be used while people are in the car because it’s dangerous to drive distracted. He says also this should be used for planning ahead for what the highway conditions are, and once someone is in the car, it’s probably too late to plan a new route.

MoDOT urges motorists to not use this app while driving.

He says he expects this app to be very popular during the winter months. Those without smart phones can visit MODOT’s website for the same information, or call MODOT to speak to someone about road conditions.

The department put out another application earlier in the year called the Show Me My Buzz App, which gives people an idea of if they’ve had too much to drink, and if they have, it gives an option to call a local cab company. Hiebert says it’s been downloaded thousands of times, so this new app should also be very popular. The department is working on ideas for a few new applications, but none are in the development phase. Hiebert says hopefully the more information that people have at their fingertips, the safer they will be on the roads.

AUDIO Allison Blood reports. Mp3 [1:03]