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The National Traffic Management & Work Zone Safety Conference -- the premier event for traffic management and roadway safety professionals was held October 9-12 in Fort Lauderdale Florida. Nearly 300 participants gathered for over 30 sessions, a live incident management demonstration, and the opportunity to tour the Broward County Traffic Management Center. Below is the outline of conference sessions. Many presentations are also listed.
Some documents are made available in PDF format. You will need Adobe Reader to view them.
Opening Session: Government Perspective on the Needs and Opportunities to Improve Work Zone Safety
Hear from government and industry leaders about the challenges, practices and regulations that are affecting our industry now and in the future.
Session Leader: Bradley Sant, ARTBA
National Work Zone Safety Information Clearinghouse video
Panel 1 – Government Outlook
Speakers: Steve Witt, OSHA Directorate of Construction; Michael Halliday, FHWA; Ginger Quinn, Virginia Department of Transportation
Panel 2 – Private Outlook
Speakers: Scott Schneider, Laborers Health and Safety Fund of North America; Gary Lopez, Ranger Construction
Overview of Night Work Safety-Pros and Cons
This keynote session addressed hazards that motorists and workers face during night-time construction. Presenters discussed the pros and cons of night construction. Model practices were also presented to address the hazards and provide solutions to common problems.
Session Leader: James Bryden, Consultant
Preventing Run-overs and Back-overs
Runovers and backovers are the leading cause of death for roadway construction workers. Over half of the runovers occur when workers are struck by construction vehicles and equipment. This session provided information on the latest research, technologies and strategies to reduce many causes of roadway construction worker deaths.
Session Leader: Dave Fosbroke, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Speakers: Jennifer Beaupre, NIOSH; Todd Pfeiffer, APAC Central Florida; Steve Henderson, ENB Paving
Safe Practices for Deploying and Retrieving Temporary Traffic Control Devices
Contractors and government agencies face special challenges when deploying and retrieving temporary traffic control devices. How do we protect workers when the temporary traffic control devices are not yet set? And, how do keep motorists from entering the work area when taking down the devices? Innovative solutions to these challenges were discussed in this session.
Work Zone Training Programs (Part 1 Requirements)
There are many training programs available to address safety needs for work zones. What are the regulations behind these training courses? What courses are supported by federal grants? What training should your employees receive? This session answered your questions about the need and quality of a number of training courses.
Opening Session: Overview of Key Concerns in Traffic and Congestion Management
State and local transportation agencies are increasingly challenged by growing congestion, shrinking budgets, and vocal motorist demands for an efficient roadway system. In this session government officials and industry leaders shared their views of how America will meet these demands over the next ten years.
Automated Law and Speed Enforcement
The presence of law enforcement is viewed as one of the most effective means of managing traffic speed and improving safety on many different types of roadways, including highway work zones. However, the use of this strategy is often constrained by staffing resources and work zone site conditions. The use of photo-radar and other automated speed enforcement technologies are believed to have the potential to overcome some of these constraints. In this session, presenters provided an overview of automated law enforcement technologies from both the U.S. and European perspectives.
Session Leader: Jerry Ullman, Texas Transportation Institute
Work Zone Safety Training Programs (Part 2 – Programs)
In September 2006, FHWA awarded $10 million in grant funding to four distinct groups to 1) identify areas where additional training and information could be developed and expanded; 2) to develop new training programs and information resources based on those needs; and 3) to conduct industry training on topics where programs already exist, but training is not accessible to all because of cost, location, or course schedules. Presenters in this session provided an overview of the training programs they have underway through the FHWA grant program to serve the roadway construction industry.
Session Leader: Donna Clark, ATSSA
In an emergency situation, every minute—every second can mean the difference between life and death. Careful planning, detailed communication plans and rehearsed incident scenarios will save time, money and lives. A lot of very good information is available for state and local jurisdictions enabling them to improve their incident management practices. National leaders in this field explained how to find and efficiently use this information to set up your plan.
Efficiency and Productivity through Safety in Roadway Construction
Profit margins are thinner than ever and your workforce is aging! Saying these are challenging times for your business is probably an understatement. Utilizing real case scenarios from road builders, we analyzed the essential functions of typical employees and how they tie to safety, productivity and efficiency.
Session Leader: Tom Hohn, CNA Speaker: Brian Roberts, CNA
Work Zone Safety Training Programs (Part 3 – Programs)
Presenters in this session provided an overview of the Roadway Safety training program they have underway through the FHWA Work Zone Safety grant program to serve the roadway construction industry. This nationally acclaimed program was explained and evaluated by attendees. Copies of the program were provided at no cost!
Session Leader: Don Elisburg, NAPA
The Lawless Driver
Improper and illegal driving behaviors are known to contribute heavily to the traffic safety problem nationally. Several strategies and technologies are available to curb such behaviors. Presenters in this session touched upon a number of initiatives currently underway in Florida and Texas to reduce driving violations and help control “the lawless driver.”
Session Leader: Jerry Ullman, Texas Transportation Institute
A Live Lesson in Incident Management at the National Traffic Management & Work Zone Safety Conference
Hundreds of attendees watched live as the Broward County Incident Management Team conducted a multiple-vehicle accident and roll-over recovery to demonstrate “quick” clearance techniques used every day along the state’s highways. Known as Rapid Incident Scene Clearance, the program was started on Florida’s Turnpike in 2004. It’s only used for major wrecks involving big rigs and hazardous fuel spills that close the highway or will block lanes for an extended period.
Traffic managers simulated a wreck onsite at the Greater Broward County Conference Center, involving two cars and a dump truck on I-95. The truck overturned on its side, spilling a load of rock and leaking fuel on the highway.
The team arrived at the simulated crash with a heavy-duty wrecker, a huge front-end loader, a street sweeper and a trailer loaded with brooms, cones, traffic arrows, ready-dry for vehicle fluid spills, and a variety of other equipment. On I-95, the state uses a rotation system in dispatching wreckers to crashes. Smaller companies do not have the equipment needed to move large trucks, causing delays when backup help is needed.
Ten years ago, an incident like this would have blocked traffic for up to five hours. Today, with specialized techniques, the highway may be able to reopen in an hour or less.
Cutting the time that highways are shut down can save millions in lost time and productivity for motorists stuck in long backups. According to transportation officials, the value of the saving ranges from $15 an hour for the average commuter to $70 an hour for commercial vehicles.
Quick and safe clearance also decreases secondary crashes and reduces the number of police officers and tow truck operators injured or killed while working a crash. On the Florida turnpike, the duration of serious crashes has been cut about 30 minutes.
More information about this program can be found by visiting www.SMARTSunGuide.com.
Trends in Integration of ITS Technologies and Smart Work Zones
Intelligent Transportation Systems or “ITS” are often considered to be the integration of high-tech innovations on roadways. ITS applications include cameras, sensors and other input devices; automated data processing, and output devices such as dynamic message signs, web sites, and highway advisory radio. Attendees of this session got to see how ITS technologies were finding a new home in temporary traffic control settings on construction sites.
Legal Liabilities for Work Zone Crashes
How well would your company be able to defend against allegations of improper work zone design? What documentation would you have available to prove you were in compliance with the MUTCD and Traffic Control Plan prior to the accident? How consistently are regular work zone inspections and associated documentation being maintained on all projects? Have your field supervisors been adequately trained? This session reviewed the items every roadway contractor should consider before beginning work.
Emergency Notification, Evacuation and Disaster Response
Get first-rate information from those with experience! Four experts come together to share lessons learned and proven methods for dealing with crisis situations.
Session Leader: Steve Corbin, FDOT
Speakers: Dr. Lee-fang Chow, Florida International University; John Easterling, Florida Turnpike Authority; Bob Arnold, FHWA; Transportation Operations; Sean Loscalzo, A Superior Towing
The Theory Behind Work Zone Traffic Control/ Work Zone Impact Analysis
Let’s face it, there are a lot of regulations and guidelines describing how to set up work zones, communicate with the public, assess the impacts a work zone will have on traffic and affected businesses . . . and more! This session took you behind the rules to help you understand why we "do what we do" in planning for temporary traffic control.
Health Concerns and PPE Use in Roadway Construction
Health concerns for roadway construction workers are often overshadowed by the more acute safety hazards they face. But health concerns are real, particularly those related to inhalation of harmful substances including silica. This session was for those who conduct work that involves cutting, crushing, or movement of materials that could become airborne health hazards.
Best Practices in Conducting a Roadway Safety Audit
When improving the safety of a dangerous section of roadway, sometimes the best solutions are the easiest and least expensive. Renowned experts of this session discussed about how you can identify dangerous sections of your roadways, assess the hazards, and create effective solutions to reduce crashes, injuries and deaths.
Speakers: Rudy Umbs, FHWA
Work Zone Closing Session- Overview of Conference and Issues
In this closing session for the Work Zone Safety portion of the Conference, government and industry leaders shared their perspectives on the lessons learned during the conference, and provided insight into actions that should be undertaken to reduce work zone related injures and fatalities in the future.
Session Leader: Bradley Sant, American Road and Builders Association
Speakers: Jerry Ullman, Institute; Don Elisburg, NAPA; Jim Bryden, Consultan; Ken Kobetsky, AASHTO; Kassandra Agee-Letton, Texas Transportation Institute.
Trends in Automated Tolling and Pricing
Traditional plazas on toll facilities create delays and impede traffic flow. The use of technology to collect tolls electronically without the need for drivers to stop at plazas is expanding. In this session, presenters discussed their experiences with open road tolling and video tolling technologies.
Session Leader: Jerry Ullman, Texas Transportation Institute
Bridging the Gap between New Technology Development and Deployment
A core strategy in roadway market development is innovation in technologies that provide improved performance at competitive prices. But getting the best technologies deployed on our roadways has many hurtles, including testing, contracting procedures and approvals. This session discussed ideas for bridging the gap between development and deployment of new technologies.
Best Practices from Around the World to Prevent Roadway Accidents
When it comes to roadway safety, stealing ideas is not a crime! On a regular basis, teams from the United States travel to Europe, Asia and other locations to gather ideas, learn from others’ experiences, and bring home products that could improve safety on America’s roadways. This session shared the results of the international scanning program—and some innovative ideas from abroad!
Session Leader: Ken Kobetsky, AASHTO
Speakers: State DOTs
Motorist Assistance Programs
In a state with rapid population growth and a giant tourist industry, keeping roadways moving is a challenge. From free roadside assistance on the highways to real-time travel information, this session provided information on the motorist assistance programs in Florida.
Session Leader: Bob Murphy, DMJM
Speakers: Erik Gaarder, PBSJ; Sergeant Mark Wysocky, Florida Highway Patrol; Rebecca Morgan, IBI Group; Ingrid Birenbaum, PBSJ
Closing Session – Review of Conference/Best Practices
View the video
In this closing session for the Traffic Management Conference, government and industry leaders shared their perspectives on the lessons learned during the conference, and provided insight into actions for traffic and congestion management in the future.
Session Leader: Brad Sant, American Road and Transportation Builders Association
Speakers: Jerry Ullman, TTI; Ken Kobetsky, AASHTO
Broward County Transportation Management Center Tour
Participants at the National Traffic Management & Work Zone Safety Conference were given the opportunity to visit the “SMART SunGuide Transportation Management Center” for a guided tour of this state-of-the-art traffic monitoring and management facility.
The SMART SunGuide TMC is a 24-hour facility run by the Florida Department of Transportation District IV and the Broward County Traffic Engineering Division. The TMC monitors freeways and major arterial routes with closed circuit TV cameras, speed sensors, traffic signal control devices and a fleet of Road Ranger Service Patrol vehicles. In coordination with local law enforcement and fire rescue, TMC operators identify and respond aggressively to quickly clear incidents, disabled vehicles and other interruptions to traffic with information provided by their intelligent transportation systems (ITS) equipment. Information from the TMC is displayed on Dynamic Message Signs (DMS) and on the region’s 5-1-1 Advanced Traveler Information Service. They also offer links to view real-time traffic conditions at www.SMARTSunGuide.com.
The tour for conference participants included the main control room, a severe incident response vehicle and a Road Ranger Service Patrol Truck.
Last modified: 4/17/2008