Work Zone Safety Grant funding results in training thousands
FHWA program helps ATSSA advance the roadway safety industry
National work zone statistics for fatalities demonstrate a critical need for training roadway safety workers.
From 2016 to 2017, fatalities in work zones increased from 782 to 799 – a 2 percent increase, according to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) website.
“The FHWA Work Zone Safety Grant was first awarded to ATSSA in 2005. Through the grant, we are able to provide essential roadway safety training and guidelines to prevent and reduce injuries and fatalities nationwide,” according to ATSSA Director of Training Jessica Scheyder.
“ATSSA provides high-quality training to thousands of individuals across the country each year,” Scheyder said. “Having funding to support our efforts is extremely beneficial to our members and programs like FHWA’s help us ensure more individuals are working safely and efficiently.”
The program awarded multi-year grants to nonprofit and not-for-profit organizations in 2006, 2011, 2013, and 2016. ATSSA’s been a recipient of the grant each year.
Since the grant award in 2006, ATSSA has trained about 80,000 workers in roadway safety. The association also has created training products including publications, podcasts, webinars, videos, and a Work Zone Safety App to reach workers in various ways. The training is designed to educate workers about safety procedures to help avoid injuries, according to ATSSA Director of New Programs Brian Watson.
Traffic control workers, engineers, and work zone designers are taught the most current standards in the industry.
“ATSSA knows those who work on our nation’s roadways have been provided the training necessary to safely perform their jobs,” Watson said.
ATSSA offers 14 training courses by request of and free to public agency employees and $25 to others.
The courses are:
- Traffic Control Design Specialist (TCDS)
- Designing Temporary Traffic Control Zones for Pedestrian Accessibility (PED)
- Developing and Implementing Successful Transportation Management Plans (TMP)
- Maintenance and Short Duration Activities (MSDA)
- Minimizing Worker Exposure in Highway Work Zones Through the Use of Positive Protection and Other Strategies (PP)
- Smarter Work Zone Intelligent Transportation Systems (SWZ)
- Urban Work Zone Design (UWZD)
- Work Zone Data Collection (WZDC)
- Work Zone Road Safety Audits (WZRSA)
- Work Zone Strategies (WZS)
- Work Zone Traffic Impact Analysis (WZTIA)
Nine of the courses were co-developed with FHWA.
Ensuring employers are compliant with state and federal mandates and their employees remain current on standards in the industry are benefits of the program, Watson said.
“Roadway workers are equipped with information they can immediately apply in the work zones,” Watson added.
In addition to completing the courses, students can earn ATSSA certifications for Traffic Control Design Specialist (TCDS), Traffic Control Technician (TCT), Traffic Control Supervisor (TCS), and Flagger Instructor Training (FIT) courses.
Juan M. Morales, ATSSA’s chief instructor since 2005, has developed and updated all the association’s courses.
“It’s an honor to provide training to our nation’s roadway workers,” Morales said. “At ATSSA, we provide the best training possible to prevent and reduce work zone injuries and fatalities.”
Public agencies interested in hosting a course can visit www.atssa.com/WorkZoneSafetyGrant to fill out a “Grant Course Request Form” or contact the ATSSA Training Department at firstname.lastname@example.org.