Recognizing the rising danger of highway work zone crash injuries and fatalities, the LHSFNA joined with four other organizations in the publication of a new brochure promoting the benefits of positive protection.

Positive protection is any protection system that contains and redirects wayward passenger cars and commercial trucks that otherwise might intrude into a highway work zone, causing potential death and destruction.

Crash statistics from the New York Department of Transportation indicate that the application of positive protection techniques in the state’s work zones is responsible for a 20 percent reduction in fatal work zone crashes.

The purpose of the brochure – a joint project of the LHSFNA, the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), the American Road and Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA), the Associated General Contractors (AGC) and the American Traffic Safety Services Association (ATSSA) – is to encourage state DOTs to make wider use of positive protection systems. The brochure resulted from a work zone safety task force convened by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) in 2002.

The brochure is the first of the task force’s three-step agenda. While increasing awareness of the problems and benefits of using positive protection, the task force will now begin to synthesize available “good practice” information and initiate research to develop guidelines for the use of positive protection in work zones.

Copies of the brochure are available through the LHSFNA online publication catalogue.

[Steve Clark]