Every construction project and maintenance operation on our roads requires a safe work zone. To ensure that work is completed as safely and with as little impact to mobility as possible the Vermont Agency of Transportation (VTrans) is constantly working to improve our work zone process including updates to policy, guidance, and standards; providing technical assistance; and enforcing federal regulations.
To systematically address the safety and mobility impacts of work zones, VTrans has established a Work Zone Safety and Mobility Policy and Guidance in accordance with Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) requirements. This Policy and Guidance provides tools and procedures to help assess and analyze work zone impacts and to take appropriate actions to minimize and mitigate these impacts, while managing safety and mobility.
Overview Presentation to ACEC on March 10th, 2021 -
Overview Presentation to AGC on April 6th, 2021 -
Work Zone Design Resources
Engineering Instructions have been developed by VTrans which include varying guidance related to Work Zone Mobility and Safety.
VTrans has developed Work Zone Traffic Control Standard Drawings that can be referenced for work sites throughout the state.
Improving Work Zone Safety is also a Significant Emphasis Area as noted in the Vermont Strategic Highway Safety Plan with acknowledgement of performing work zone field reviews, reviewing traffic control plans, and implementing federal work zone rules.
The FHWA Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) Part 6 includes specific design resources for Temporary Traffic Control for Work Zones, including a variety of Typical Applications to cover many common situations.
Work Zone Training Resources
Many local and national organizations offer various trainings for designers, highway workers, and others involved in our work zones. These include the VTrans Training Center (VTTC), the Associated General Contractors of VT (AGC VT), the National Highway Institute (NHI), the American Traffic Safety Services Association (ATSSA), and the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO). The 2021 Work Zone Safety and Mobility Guidance Document discusses training in more detail.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is a Transportation Management Plan (TMP)?
A: A TMP is the compilation of all necessary documentation related to the management of traffic within a work zone. This may include Traffic Control Plans, a Transportation Operations Plan, and a Public Information Plan as needed. Significant projects require all of these components to be considered, whereas a straightforward project or work zone may only include one or more.
Q: What’s the definition of a “significant” project?
A: A significant project is defined by FHWA as, “A project that, alone or in combination with other concurrent projects nearby, is anticipated or has the potential to cause sustained work zone impacts that are greater than what is considered tolerable based on State policy and/or engineering judgment." For additional guidance, review the 2021 Work Zone Safety and Mobility Guidance for determining project significance.
Q: What is meant by "Additional Narrative" at the end of the TMP Checklist?
A: A project that is determined to be Significant should include an accompanying narrative. If a project is determined to be Not Significant, there may be checked boxes in the checklist where additional explanation would be helpful for the bidding contractors. Please include a memo style narrative to explain your thoughts related to TCP, PI, and TO as you feel relevant. Keep in mind that this checklist and narrative are informational only, so anything that needs to be a requirement of the contract should be included in the plans or bid documents independent of this narrative.
Q: What is the process for determining a speed reduction through work zones?
A: VTrans Traffic Engineering Instruction 20-603 provides additional information.
Q: How do I report an issue in a work zone?
A: Report the issue by contacting the Project Resident Engineer. To find this information use VTransparency to view the project’s fact sheet and contact information.
Q: Where can I find more information on work zones?
A: Check out the Work Zone Resource Center for standards and guidance on the various aspects of work zones.