National Work Zone Awareness Week
Each year the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the American Traffic Safety Services Association (ATSSA) conduct National Work Zone Awareness Week (NWZAW) to bring attention to motorist and worker safety as well as mobility issues in work zones. This year’s event will be held April 8 – April 12 with the theme Drive Like You Work Here. The national campaign will officially kick off at the Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge project in Washington D.C.
NWZAW was originally created by the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) in 1997 before the FHWA and ATSSA made it a national event in 2000. The inaugural goals were:
- Increase public awareness of the need for greater caution and care while driving through work zones to reduce fatalities and injuries
- Establish and promote a common set of safety tips for motorists
- Increase public sector, industry, and worker awareness of the value of training and best practices regarding work zone safety
- Establish a nationwide program to promote work zone safety
- Communicate to workers and contractors the effects of motorist frustration with delays on their driving behavior and suggest possible actions to alleviate that behavior
- Engage interested parties involved in work zone safety as partner
Along with the FHWA, other agencies that take part in NWZAW include the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
Some tips from the FMCSA to increase highway worker safety are:
- Research your route
- Pay attention
- Slow down
- Move into the open lane
- Keep your distance
To learn more about the campaign and how you can become more involved, you can visit the campaign’s official website.