Google Maps Now Updates Your Travel To Account For Railroad Crossings

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Google Maps has now started providing travel time adjustments that take railroad crossings into account. That’s based on a recent report stemming from a Reddit post by user “AutoEvolution.”

As might be expected, the change is relatively subtle. So it won’t necessarily be making an appearance for every Maps user. But, where it does appear, it appears as a banner-style pop-up during navigation. And more specifically when they approach a railroad crossing.

In the image shared by the Redditor, the banner header reads “Expect Delays,” next to a railroad crossing icon. The message embedded next to that simply reads “Railroad crossing.”


Why won’t Railroad Crossings alerts appear for every Google Maps user?

Now, the reason most users won’t likely see the message is it appears contingent on what users are doing. It is not to say that it won’t work for every user. But users do need to be navigating and their route needs to cross a railroad. And beyond that, this appears to be part of an ongoing slow rollout. Potentially over several recent updates and future ones. So it may not be available everywhere, even for those who meet the criteria.

Conversely, Google itself hasn’t announced the change just yet either. At least not in an official capacity. The company likely won’t provide a presser or announcement until it is ready to roll the change out more widely.

Google Maps isn’t the first to get this feature

Google also rolled out this feature in its other mapping application, namely Waze, last year. So the Maps variant likely builds on details gathered since that app’s launch.

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That data also probably feeds back into exactly how the railroad crossings banner UI works in Google Maps. The full extent of that won’t likely be known until Google makes an official announcement. But, for now, it isn’t immediately apparent whether the railroad crossings need to be in use — by a train — or not for the alert to appear. Google may also be relying on data about how often a given railroad crossing is active. Or it may simply place the alert on any and all railroad crossings that aren’t out of service.

Google Maps Railroad Crossings alert example from Redditor AutoEvolution