An instructional letter establishing rules and procedures for Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) employees to plan for and obtain work zone traffic control assistance from the Washington State Patrol (WSP) went into effect August 22, 1997.
The presence of WSP in work zones during critical phases of construction and maintenance work enhances motorist and worker safety. Although WSP presence in work zones is not a new technique, there remained a need to develop a comprehensive guidance plan that was acceptable to both WSDOT and WSP. In response to that need, the Work Zone Safety Task Force convened a team of WSDOT and WSP experts to develop guidance that included input from both groups, which resulted in the instructional letter.
The newest tool to emerge from the development of rules and procedures for work zone traffic control assistance is the “WSP Field Check List.” The one-page check list must be filled out by both the WSP officer and WSDOT inspector. This brings both parties together on site, enhancing both communications and safety.
The development of an instructional letter detailing rules and procedures for work zone traffic control assistance is a fine example of teamwork between WSDOT and WSP that clearly demonstrates a firm commitment to safety.