If you plan on participating in the annual Mackinac Bridge walk, you can sign up for text alerts regarding the event.
Mackinac County 911 will send updates and other information from the Mackinac Bridge Authority to cell phones now through Labor Day.
The messages will focus on schedule reminders, traffic alerts, weather updates, and any type of emergency.
"The bridge walk has some significant changes again, so we want to make sure we can reach as many people as possible with information about the event," said Bob Sweeney, executive secretary of the MBA. "We really appreciate Mackinac County 911/Emergency Management's willingness to make this system available for notifications again this year."
The text messages are free, unless your mobile plan charges any fees. And you won't receive any messages after Sept. 4.
To sign up, follow these steps:
- Text "MBW2018" to 67283
- Users will receive a reply "Welcome to the Mackinac Bridge Walk 2018 text alerting system," verifying participation in the text alerting system for the event.
- Users can opt out by sending a reply "STOP MBW2018" if they no longer wish to receive text messages/alerts. Messages will automatically stop on Sept. 4.
Options for walk day are:
- Starting from either end of the bridge and walking toward the center, turning around at the midpoint and returning to the city they started from. The turnaround points will move toward the ends of the bridge beginning at 10 a.m., but walkers can walk at least a portion of the bridge as long as they start by 11:30 a.m.
- Walking the entire length of the bridge, starting from either end. Those who choose this option must reach the midpoint before 10 a.m., or they will be turned back. Anyone who walks the entire bridge must arrange their own transportation back to the side from which they started once the bridge reopens to public traffic at noon.
- Walking the entire length of the bridge, starting from either end, and then turning around and walking back to the side from which they started. In this option, walkers will need to cross the midpoint on their return trip by 10 a.m., or they will be turned back and need to find their own transportation back across the bridge after it reopens at noon.
And remember, the bridge will be closed to public traffic during the walk, from 6:30 a.m. to noon on Labor Day, Sept. 3.
This is based on recommendations from the Michigan State Police and U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
Emergency vehicles will still be permitted to cross the bridge, but no public vehicles will be allowed until the walk is over and all of the walkers are off the bridge.