Innovative Approaches to Ensure Traffic Safety

The approach often taken to improve traffic Safety has been to increase awareness of the reasons for traffic accidents and related fatalities. This approach is then enhanced by following up with personal education on traffic safety.

But there is another approach that is being adopted. This approach is to look at the way traffic moves within our road systems of the United States. This approach does not focus solely on the individual, but, on the dynamic of our traffic flow.

Standard Approach for Traffic Safety

The standard approach for traffic safety looks at the human behavior.  The issues requiring special attention are identified, like;

  • distracted driving,
  • carelessness,
  • lack of sleep,
  • intoxication.

Traffic Cones

Alternative Approach to Traffic Safety

In the alternative approach, the focus is on the way traffic moves through our transportation infrastructure. This view considers issues such as cyclists being on the same road as fast moving cars, excessive speed limits on roads that curve, etc.

At the head of this approach is Vision Zero. As it is stated in How does Vision Zero differ from the traditional approach to traffic safety?

But in the Vision Zero framework, the road safety problem isn’t the individual, but rather the flaws in the transportation system—flaws that mean, for example, that cars can move at excessive speeds on city streets and incompatible road users (for instance, bicyclists and drivers) have to share the road.

In redefining the problem, we’re required to develop solutions that will impact the true culprit: an unforgiving street network that doesn’t take into account that people make mistakes. The focus thus shifts from solutions focused on perfecting individual behavior to solutions focused on perfecting a transportation system that failed to protect people who made predictable errors.

Construction Sites

In addition to our regular traffic patterns in our road system, construction sites need to get special attention. We have previously stated in this blog that construction sites are a critical place to insure traffic safety directly. When a construction site is on or near a traffic pattern, the dynamic of the traffic is distorted from the original intent. Traffic speeds need to be reduced to  accommodate the unusual circumstances. Traffic Control Plans must be developed and agreed to by the effected municipalities. Many considerations must be made for optimum safety results.

Traffic Safety products are used to clearly mark the new, but temporary, traffic patterns created by construction sites. Attention must be made to all factors to ensure a harmonious interaction between all moving elements during the construction process.

Approaches for Traffic Safety

All approaches must be considered to ensure people may move about their communities safely, even during times of road improvements or construction. At Traffic Safety Direct, we are experienced in assisting the effort of safety. Contact us anytime. We love to share our experience and knowledge.

Pedestrian Safety is a World-Wide Concern

Pedestrian safety is a concern throughout the world. The United Nations (UN) in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO) developed the UN Road Safety Collaboration. This collaboration set out in 2011 to achieve the goal of saving 5 million lives through Road Safety during the period of 2011 to 2020, referred to as the Decade of Action.

Speed contributes to around one-third of all fatal road traffic crashes in high income countries, and up to half in low and middle-income countries. The Decade of Action seeks to prevent road traffic deaths and injuries which experts project will take the lives of 1.9 million people annually by 2020.

On May 11th of 2011, dozens of countries around the world kicked off the first global Decade of Action. The Global Plan for the Decade of Action outlines steps towards improving the safety of roads and vehicles, enhancing emergency services, and building up road safety management.

The UN Road Safety Collaboration announced that the Fourth UN Global Road Safety Week would be held from May 8th to the 14th in 2017. The Week focused on speed and what can be done to address this key risk factor for road traffic deaths and injuries.

As stated in the “Save Lives, #SlowDown” web site, it states:

Evidence shows that the key solutions for managing speed are establishing and enforcing speed limit laws, building or modifying roads to include features to limit speed, installing technologies in vehicles, and raising awareness about the dangers of speeding as well as the actual speed limit on each road. To manage and reduce speeds we need safe vehicles, safe roads and safe people!

On a previous post in this Blog, we discussed “Actions That Can Be Taken To Improve Pedestrian Safety“. For instance, private communities and businesses can consider alternatives, such as speed bumps, signs and citizen education, as a deterrent to drivers exceeding safe speed levels for areas with active pedestrians and cyclists.

At Traffic Safety Direct, we offer speed bumps and other useful products to manage the speed on roads and within parking lots.  For further assistance and information on the topic of pedestrian safety, contact us at 888-260-3246



Pedestrian Safety Requires Different Solutions in Different Situations

Maintaining pedestrian safety is a challenge in many different situations. There is pedestrian safety in neighborhoods, disaster response, construction sites and public venues to name just a few. Understanding that different situations present unique challenges is important.

Pedestrian Safety in Neighborhoods

pedestrian crosswalkPedestrian safety is becoming a larger issue in our communities. People are walking more. They are moving to urban neighborhoods and adding steps to improve their health. And of course, children will always be playing near the street.

There is much that we can do to improve the safety of our communities. We do not need to rely only on the police for enforcement. Our community can organize to play an important role in managing traffic safety.

Pedestrian Safety during Disaster Response and Recovery

cone with chain connectorResidents that evacuated want to return to see what damage has occurred to their personal property. This is understandable. However, debris is strewn everywhere. Accidents are likely to occur in this scenario

Disaster Recovery crews are working hard to ensure residents are not trapped or lying injured in their homes. Cleanup crews are trying to act quickly so emergency vehicles can move freely through the streets. Residents are tired and emotional, but, feel compelled to check on their homes. This is a very dangerous time.

Pedestrian Safety During Road Construction

During the construction process, traffic patterns will be disrupted. This is due to a combination of temporary routes and detours. Traffic safety products are required to meet the requirements identified in Traffic Control Plans.

Pedestrian Safety in small public venues

plastic crowd control postCrowd Control can be challenging for even the smallest of venues, such as signup for Little League Baseball or a voting booth. However, the simple act of creating an easy to identify lane for people to follow can address this challenge.

Since people will instinctively arrange their movement using the site of a simple obstacle. small crowds can be managed with lightweight devices. A line can be easily created, providing a visual path for the small crowd to follow. The result is order rather than chaos.

Traffic Safety

At Traffic Safety Direct, we provide traffic safety products to keep workers, volunteers and citizens safe in varying situations. Contact us at Traffic Safety Direct and let us know how we may be able to assist you.

Delineating Posts for Pedestrian and Driver Safety

The National Council of State Legislatures stated that there is an increase in the amount of Americans walking for transportation and recreation. With the increase of pedestrians walking  rather than driving to their destination, all actions must be taken to increase public safety. Attention to pedestrian safety is growing in importance.

The pedestrian must be protected when coming into close proximity of vehicular traffic patterns. One alternative is the In-street pedestrian crossing signs. Previously on this Blog, we discussed the value pedestrian crosswalk signs have for safety in road construction zones and, also, in permanent pedestrian crosswalks. Pedestrians can readily see the safe access within the traffic pattern. And, the motorist is made aware of the marked pedestrian crossing.

Delineator Posts

Delineator Posts are another alternative to protect both the pedestrian and the driver of the vehicle. These posts can be used to protect pedestrians and workers in construction or hazardous areas.

Delineator posts can also be used to clearly identify auto traffic patterns on high-speed roads in permanent locations.

There are several choices of plastic posts with bases for, both, temporary situations and permanent locations.

diamond_top_close_upDiamond Style Top Post Reflective

These posts are bright orange with two 3″ bands of reflective tape for improved daytime and nighttime visibility. They are designed for quick set-up in a limited-space area. These posts can withstand impacts and do not knock down or blow down easily

white_dome_delineator_topWhite Dome Top Delineator Post

These bright white posts have very similar benefits to the Diamond Style Post described above. These white dome posts are perfect for Valet Parking or other areas where a more sophisticated look is needed.

Tuff Post high performance channelizer

Tuff Post is a high performance channelizer designed to meet the harsh demands of high speed, high traffic areas. Tuff Post has been tested to sustain 50 impacts at 50 MPH with little damage to the unit and to the impacting vehicle, while remaining upright with no vertical listing.

Tuff Post is ideal for exit lane delineation, head-to-head traffic separation, urban turn restrictions, edge line delineation, or anywhere that durable, flexible, high performance channelization is required. Tuff Post’s patented reactive spring system ensures the post will return to its original position impact after impact, reducing replacement costs.

Flexi-Guide FG336UR Post Reflective

The Flexi-Guide FG336UR was developed for demanding high-speed, 2-way, 2-lane detour operations and has become the industry standard for toughness, impact resistance and long-lasting performance. It conforms to MUTCD and NCHRP 350 standards and features the unique clover-leaf design that allows tubular post to rebound time after time.

The Delineating Post is excellent for pedestrian safety, while also providing a great visual for the driver of a vehicle – keeping everyone safe in concentrated traffic zones.

If you are interested in learning more about the alternatives for delineating traffic posts, whether in a construction zone or a permanent traffic pattern, contact Traffic Safety Direct

Inland Ports and the Road Construction They Create

Road construction is occurring across the United States. You may be thinking the only reason is to support increased traffic from a growing population. However, you may be surprised that large road construction projects are also created to support commercial traffic for hauling goods to and from Inland Ports. You may be in one of the many States with a developing Inland Port.

What is an Inland Port? 

Traffic safety with road constructionAn Inland Port is a dry port away from the coastal port, but near railways, airports, and road transportation hubs.

An Inland Port performs many of the same functions as a coastal port processing trade and distribution of goods. They are large regional centers serving domestic and international markets with access to large labor forces.

An Inland Port supports coastal ports and enhances our nation’s supply chains. To name just a couple of advantages provided by an Inland Port:

  • Expedited handing and distribution of goods because of easy access to multi-modal transportation, which may not be available at the coastal port.
  • Reduced congestion on over-extended coastal ports that are operating at their maximum performance levels.

As stated in 10 Inland Ports to Watch

Located outside crowded port areas, where land is scarce or not available at all, inland ports’ advantages are well documented because of their positive impact on regional industrial development and because they create space for more buildings in proximity to intermodal sites, thus relieving pressure in port areas and on roadways.

Multi Modal Transportation

As an example, Texas has a developing Inland Port just a few minutes drive south of Dallas and 5, and more, hours north of the Gulf of Mexico and the Mexican border. This area is uniquely positioned as a multi-modal distribution hub:

  • Union Pacific Southern Dallas Intermodal Facility
  • BNSF Railway (Planned Intermodal Facility)
  • Four Major Highway Connectors (I20, I45, I35, Loop 9)
  • Lancaster Airport

Construction is Needed

Road construction is occurring throughout the State of Texas. Some of the construction would be occurring just because of increased population. However, the increased distribution of goods is also creating the need for advanced road design to accommodate increased truck traffic from the gulf of Mexico up to the Inland Port just south of Dallas. To drive from Dallas to the Port of Houston, for instance, is around four hours. The State is large and its economic growth does not look like it is going to pause anytime soon.

The story of economic growth generating increased distribution of goods is happening throughout the United States. The result is an increase in road construction projects, both in progress and in their planning stages. As we have stated in previous posts, Traffic safety is paramount around these construction sites for the drivers, passengers, pedestrians and construction workers.

So, road construction projects you are observing may not be solely due to population growth. With Inland Ports being developed in more than a dozen different locations across the United States. road construction projects will continue to increase.