Work Zones and Flagging workshop held in Milton

Vermont Local Roads held a Work Zone and Flagging workshop January 20 in Milton. After a morning of instruction all 45 municipal workers in attendance passed a written certification test required every two years. 

The workshop was instructed by Steve Jerome, Vermont Local Roads Circuit Rider. Jerome emphasized to all in attendance the importance of safety at the work site, and that it is critical to make sure compliance with the 2009 edition of the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) is met. Of the 53 reported Vermont work zone crashes in 2008, 15 took place with a flagger present, Jerome said. 

A point stressed by Jerome was the language used in the 2009 MUTCD differed from the 2003 edition. Many section that were formerly worded with, “may” have been replaced with the mandatory, “shall.” A PDF version of the 2009 MUTCD is available for download on the Vermont Local Roads Web site on the homepage. It is something each garage should have, Jerome said. Retro reflectivity requirements in the class 2 vest have been increased. Required by the MUTCD is a vest with the serial number 107-004. The group got a look at the vest and how it differed from the previous version. 

Steve Jerome shows participants in the Milton Work Zones and Flagging workshop the difference in retro reflectivity between the old class 2 vest (left) and the new MUTCD required 107-004 vest (right). The camera flash simulates light directed at each vest.

After a discussion on the fundamental flagging principles and proper set-up of the work zone into the four sections, the group ventured outside amid the snow flurries to take a look at a hypothetical situation that Jerome envisioned for Bombardier Road in Milton. The group returned inside and split into teams to design a daily traffic control plan for the hypothetical work site. Having the plan on site is a MUTCD requirement, Jerome said. 

The 45 participants at the Milton Work Zones and Flagging workshop are shown a hypothetical work site by instructor Steve Jerome (brown coat center pointing) to design a daily traffic control plan.

The exercise was discussed at length and created a constructive dialogue between the municipalities in attendance regarding the proper set-up of the site. Placement of flaggers, signs and taper cones were drawn on each team’s diagram. Among the other factors that were considered at the site adjacent to the town offices, fire and police station were: Emergency vehicle notice and movement, crosswalk and sidewalk closure, pedestrian traffic diversion, and whether having a uniformed traffic officer would be necessary. A form that can be used to design a daily traffic control plan is available to download on the Vermont Local Roads Web site. 

Participants in the Milton Work Zones and Flagging workshop work together to design a daily traffic plan for the hypothetical work site the group looked at outside the Milton town offices.

Vermont Local Roads will hold two more work zones and flagging workshops in the upcoming month- February 10 in Lyndon and February 24 in Wilmington. Registration is still open for both workshops on the Vermont Local Roads Web site, or by calling (800) 462-6555.

 Make sure everyone in your crew is certified to flag in 2010.

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About vtlocalroads

The Vermont Local Roads Program at Saint Michael’s College is part of the Local Technical Assistance Program (LTAP), a nationwide effort financed jointly by the Federal Highway Administration and individual State Departments of Transportation. Its purpose is to provide road and bridge know-how to municipal people involved with highways. There are LTAP Centers in 50 states and Puerto Rico and six Native American locations. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations presented on this page are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of FHWA, VAOT or Saint Michael’s College. All references to proprietary items in this publication are not endorsements of any company or products. Sponsored by the Vermont Agency of Transportation, the Vermont Local Roads Program provides information, training and technical assistance to cities, towns and villages in Vermont. This is done by newsletters, seminars and workshops, distribution of publications and by response to requests.
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