ATSSA Blog

Biden names MassDOT Secretary as FHWA deputy administrator

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President Joe Biden named Stephanie Pollack as deputy administrator for the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) today.

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker and Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito announced the departure of Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) Secretary and CEO Pollack and named her successor, according to a news release from the governor’s press office today.

Pollack will also serve as acting administrator for FHWA until a permanent administrator is confirmed by the U.S. Senate, according to the release.

FHWA issues MUTCD ruling on ‘Uses of and Nonstandard Syntax on Changeable Message Signs’

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The Federal Highway administration issued a Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices or Streets and Highways (MUTCD) official ruling this week pertaining to syntax on changeable message sign messaging.

Official Ruling No. 2(09)-174 provides an official interpretation for the question of “whether the MUTCD provides for displays on changeable message signs (CMS) that use unconventional wording typically not found on standard signing and how public input into the development of CMS messages may be used.”

The ruling notes that the devices should not contain advertising or messages unrelated to traffic control and then reviews the five principles for an effective traffic control device: fulfill a need; command attention; convey a clear, simple meaning; command respect from road users; and give adequate time for proper response.

FHWA issues updated information on devices at mid-block pedestrian crossings

MUTCD update addresses channelizing devices

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"Channelizing Devices at Mid-Block Pedestrian Crossings in Conjunction with In-Street Pedestrian Crossing (R1-6 Series) Signs." 

Official Ruling No. 3(09)-61 (I)  clarifies instructions for using channelizing devices such as tubular markers at mid-block crosswalk locations, according to an update from FHWA.

NHTSA declares October 'Pedestrian Safety Month'

Goal is to encourage alertness by motorists

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Pedestrians take the forefront in October with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) holding its first “Pedestrian Safety Month,” a national educational outreach to heighten awareness for motorists and pedestrians of all ages.

The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) held a Summit on Pedestrian Safety in July during which groups representing both pedestrian and bicyclist organizations took part.

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Office of Safety offers a “focused approach” program to target specific issues including pedestrian and bicyclist safety in jurisdictions across the nation. It offers examples of programs that have undertaken changes to target this issue.

AASHTO provides update on MASH-compliant devices

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The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) recently issued information about new Manual for Assessing Safety Hardware (MASH)-compliant devices that have been granted federal aid eligibility letters.

The AASHTO communication from Director of Engineering Jim McDonnell was issued to provide an update on roadway safety devices now on the market and approved under federal guidelines.

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