Rest Areas Offer Free WiFi

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) -- State transportation officials are considering a plan to offer free wireless Internet access at the state's rest stops.

The access would be offered at all 56 of the rest areas along the state's interstates.

The initiative could start as early as next year.

Officials say the access could help travelers find out weather and road conditions and to find restaurants and hotels along their route and at their destination.

Iowa, Texas and Washington state already offer free "wi-fi" access at rest stops.

Matt Vanover, a spokesman for the Illinois Department of Transportation, says officials hope to install the free "wi-fi" at no cost to the department.

Iowa's service is provided free by a vendor that funds its investment with Internet ads.