Bridge/City Twitter Issues

When emergency situations happen, communication problems can be costly.

The overpass at I-40 and Washington is still standing.

But Saturday night the talk of the town was about how it had collapsed.

Whipping winds, raging rapids and flash floods --- weather damage was everywhere Saturday night.

But the only things spreading faster than floods were rumors that the bridge had caved-in.

People calling into Newschannel 10 got their information here - a message from the Office of Emergency Management on the social networking Web Site Twitter.

The message read -- AFD is reporting road caving in at I-40 and Washington, please avoid the area.

While the message was 100 percent accurate, some viewers found it confusing -- falsely thinking that the bridge had caved in, not the road below.

Some of that confusion comes because messages on Twitter can only be one hundred forty characters long - or about fifteen words.

But the Office of Emergency Management is working to find creative ways to make all the details you need to know fit in 140 characters before a more serious issue happens.

Although there was some confusion this time, Emergency Management Officials still say Twitter is a useful tool.