|by John Beagle
There just might be one more weapon on the Ohio Highway Patrolman's belt. It could be twitter.
The Ohio State Highway Patrol announced last Friday, March 6, that they will begin using online social networking Web site Twitter.com to advise about matters concerning users of Ohio highways and byways. Including real time emergencies or even asking for help locating the bad guy.
Twitter is a social networking micro-blogging service. It enables its users to send and read other users' updates known as tweets.
Tweets are text-based posts of up to 140 characters in length.
Updates are displayed on the user's profile page and delivered to other users who have signed up to receive them.
The highway patrol can send and receive updates via the Twitter website, SMS via cellphone. This means the patrols in the field may be able to update users regarding accidents, other traffic concerns an emergencies in real time.
The service is free to use over the web, but using SMS may incur phone services provider fees.
Anyone can receive the patrol alerts by following OSHP the Ohio State Patrol http://www.twitter.com/OSHP
Ohio Highway Patrol spokesman Brad Shaw said the patrol won't start sending out its first Twitters until sometime next week. As of the writing of this article, there were 347 followers, make that 348 followers and no updates.