TEST, 123456789, TEST!
The reporting system is bad. It should change. More information should be provided. In Japan, there are color-coded route maps (with time-between-exit estimates) where we have only amber-colored words. These route maps provide so much more information in the same space that commuters can use the information to find alternate routes and avoid areas of bad traffic. I believe they're provided by Japan's Vehicle Information Communication Service: http://www.vics.or.jp/ But I can't get much past the mesmerizing flash animations.
For your interest, here's Berlin's traffic information system: http://www.vmzberlin.de/vmz/
But here on Long Island, we have an ostensibly sophisticated traffic monitoring sytem: http://metrocommute.com/LI/index.html So why can't we find a way to get more of this information onto highway advisory signs? Specific (color-coded?) speeds are far more useful descriptors than "heavy," or "delays." Is this another instance of west coast dominance? Check out: http://www.trafficgauge.com/ Hey, they stole my idea! (almost)
Also, who's typing these messages? Are they compiled automatically? Is putting the test message up analogous to turning on an away message on AIM? Does it ever say, "Happy Birthday, Jim!"