BLOG: Four Classic Safety Principles of Traffic Control
This was written by Thomas Trott of Traffic Pro Beds
As we conclude Maryland Safety Month, we are freshly reminded of the dangerous circumstances road workers are exposed to daily. While government and private programs are constantly developing new techniques and technologies to protect workers on the road, there are plenty of timeless safety techniques Traffic Workers can embody to create safer working circumstances for drivers and workers alike. Here are some of the basic tried and true techniques to help Traffic Control Workers avoid deadly situations on the road.
Always be aware of your surroundings.
With the increased accessibility and rapid innovations in cellular technologies, distracted driving is at an all time high. Since drivers can’t be counted on for staying aware of their surroundings, it’s all the more important that road workers always do. As a traffic worker, just staying off your cell phone and always being aware of oncoming traffic is going to exponentially decrease the probability of getting in an incident. In our fleet, our Traffic Pro Beds have warning labels posted right in front of where our personnel stand to place devices, so that they are constantly reminded to be alert.
Avoid being in the direct line of traffic as much as possible.
It goes without saying, but the more you’re on the road the more exposed to a potential incident you are. On the job, avoid getting out of your vehicle unnecessarily, and when it is necessary, always do everything you can to eliminate direct exposure to traffic. This can be done by using your vehicle as a *barrier between you and traffic and storing devices in your truck so you always have quick access to them from the safe side, out of the line of traffic. We specifically centered the Traffic Pro Bed’s design with this principle in mind, keeping personnel off the back of their truck and secured in their personnel bucket with their safety restraint system as much as possible. Making them less likely to be directly impacted during a collision, more protected by the bed when there is a collision, and never in the direct line of traffic otherwise. This system also effectively eliminates the need to walk around the vehicle on a work site.
*Please Note: Even while using your truck as a barrier it is important to stay visible and maintain visibility with traffic.
Always make sure everyone is on the same page at all times; before going to a work zone, while in a work zone, during an unexpected event in a work zone, and when leaving a work zone. The best way to do this is with active clear and concise communication. For example, many traffic controllers use two way radios. In addition to this standard practice, our fleet also has its truck beds configured so that the personnel deploying devices are always directly behind the cab where both verbal and visual communication between deployer and driver are the most optimal. This especially helps relay information faster when unexpected events and changes occur.
Maintain Visibility with Traffic.
In a work zone you always want to safely maintain clear visibility between you and traffic. If they don’t see you, they don’t know you’re there. Further, the more distance between you and a vehicle when you see each other, the more time you both have to respond appropriately. In our fleet we have uncompromised 360 degree amber lighting, and towering yellow and red diamond grade chevrons always facing traffic in a work zone just to help make our work zones and personnel that much more apparent to oncoming traffic, especially during night work.
To learn more about Traffic Pro Beds, visit: Traffic Pro Beds