Cover Image

Not for Sale



View/Hide Left Panel
Click for next page ( 48


The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement



Below are the first 10 and last 10 pages of uncorrected machine-read text (when available) of this chapter, followed by the top 30 algorithmically extracted key phrases from the chapter as a whole.
Intended to provide our own search engines and external engines with highly rich, chapter-representative searchable text on the opening pages of each chapter. Because it is UNCORRECTED material, please consider the following text as a useful but insufficient proxy for the authoritative book pages.

Do not use for reproduction, copying, pasting, or reading; exclusively for search engines.

OCR for page 47
47 conditions during the day or at night at all AADT levels if the Efforts to inform and raise motorist awareness of the reduction in crash costs exceeds at least 10 percent. If the cost hazards of driving through work zones are already fairly of enforcement is higher than this amount, their use is only prevalent across the United States. Most states have work justified if greater reductions in crash costs are achieved or zone safety tips and other information posted on their web- their use is restricted to higher-volume roadways. For exam- sites, and they make brochures and pamphlets available to ple, if enforcement costs for a 1-mile work zone are $50 per motorists at driver licensing stations and other locations (65). hour ($5,000 per 100 hours), their use can be economically In addition, a number of public safety announcements have justified during periods of work zone activity with temporary been developed and are periodically run on local television lane closures during the day on roadways with an AADT of and radio outlets. Nationally, Work Zone Awareness Week 75,000 vpd if a 10 percent reduction in crash costs can be is held each April to further raise driver consciousness achieved and at nighttime once the roadway AADT approaches about this particular safety concern (66). Finally, a training 200,000 vpd. Conversely, if crash cost reductions of 25 per- program has recently been developed to educate new driv- cent are achieved, use of enforcement at this cost level is justi- ers about work zones and how to better navigate them fiable at all AADT levels during the day and once AADT levels safely (67). exceed about 50,000 vpd, if the work activity and temporary Training of work zone designers and field staff has been lane closures are done at night. an area of emphasis for FHWA, highway agencies, labor The third strategy in this category, improved application of unions, etc., for many years. An abundance of training courses, increased driver penalties in work zones, is predicated on the manuals, videos, web-based modules, and other techniques notion that higher penalties consistently applied to violators exist. Most of these can be found, organized by topic, at the of traffic laws in work zones will change driving behavior and National Work Zone Safety Information Clearinghouse (68). yield a reduction in work zone crash costs. Most states already Recently, the FHWA Work Zone Safety Grant program was have laws in place to increase the penalties for work zone established to provide assistance for highway work zone safety traffic violations. Some of the increases are fairly extensive. training and guideline development toward the improvement However, it appears that these increased penalty laws are not of highway work zone safety. A number of consortiums are always fully supported in the courts (61). Although it may be developing guidance on a number of work zone safety-related possible to improve the extent and consistency with which topics and conducting various types of training to dissemi- these penalties are applied, it is not clear whether such im- nate this guidance to users (69). provements will yield measurable safety benefits. Deterrence Although these efforts are generally accepted as beneficial theory indicates that it is the likelihood of apprehension, rather in promoting safer work zones, measuring the effects of these than the penalty received by being apprehended, that has the types of activities upon safety is generally not possible. Although major influence on behavior (62). This theory is supported by indicators of the quantity of outreach to motorists and train- several European studies of automated speed enforcement ing of designers and field personnel can be identified, the abil- systems (albeit in non-work zone locations), which have ity of agencies to assess the quality of those efforts in terms of shown a 25 to 35 percent reduction in crashes associated with changes in either driving behavior or in worker-related activ- the implementation of these systems even though the penal- ities does not exist. Consequently, it is not possible to apply ties associated with the violations are not extreme (63, 64). any type of economic assessment to these strategies as has Emphasis on increasing the likelihood of apprehension been done elsewhere in this chapter. through additional enforcement officer presence or automated enforcement technologies would appear to offer a greater Strategies to Develop Procedures potential benefit to work zone safety at this time. to Effectively Manage Work Zones The emphasis of the strategies identified in the NCHRP Strategies to Increase Knowledge guidance document for this category is on programs and and Awareness of Work Zones procedures that an agency can implement to bring about an The NCHRP guidance document suggests the following institutional change in how work zone safety is incorpo- two strategies that increase knowledge and awareness of work rated into the agency's way of doing business (52). Four zones as a way of improving safety (52): specific strategies were identified that were believed to offer high-leverage opportunities for safety improvements to Disseminate work zone safety information to road users, occur: and Provide work zone training programs and manuals for de- Develop or enhance agency-level work zone crash data signers and field staff. systems;