BOOBY TRAPPED: WORK ZONES

Itility companies are a major abuser of motorist safety. They create hazards in a variety of ways, from poorly planned and delineated work zones and obstruced shoulders to inadequate warnings of major obstacles in the lane. Critical warning signs can be so badly damaged that the message is not readable, while protective guardrail may have dirt mounded in front that will act like a ramp to vault vehicles into the very hazard that the guardrail was intended to shield. These failures on the part of utility workers are usually caused by their lack of training as to the purpose and proper use of safety devices and practices. Thus utility companies and the road agency are ultimately responsible for the dangerous practices and have the means to improve safety if they recognize the problem. All street and highway agencies should closely review their permit and utlity accommodation policies to assure that all road use is regulated and that there are adequate minimum requirements for controlling work zone activities under access agreements. Minimum requirements for training, supervision and traffic control should be required for all workers. Agencies should foster a cooperative effort with utility management to provide advice and cosponsor training for employees. Going hand in hand with such requirements in enforcement. The value of adopting regulations without a commitment to enforcement may prove ineffective and possibly increase agency liability. Enforcement policies should include the review of police accident reports to determine a utility's involvement in creating hazards. The systematic recording and review of public complaints about utility work zones should also be utilized. (Author)

  • Availability:
  • Corporate Authors:

    TranSafety Incorporated

    2020 K Street, NW, Suite 350
    Washington, DC  United States  20006
  • Authors:
    • Anderson, R W G
  • Publication Date: 1985-1

Media Info

  • Features: Figures;
  • Pagination: p. 4
  • Serial:
    • TRANSAFETY REPORTER
    • Volume: 3
    • Issue Number: 1
    • Publisher: TranSafety, Incorporated
    • ISSN: 0884-612X

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00395703
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Oct 31 1985 12:00AM