Rule on Work Zone Safety and MobilityAuthor/Presenter: Scriba, Tracy; Seplow, Jennifer
After soliciting input from transportation agencies and organizations across the country, the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) updated 23 CFR 630 Subpart J, the Rule on Work Zone Safety and Mobility, on September 9, 2004. The Rule updates the former regulation, “Traffic Safety in Highway and Street Work Zones,” to address the challenges of today and those likely to be faced in the future. The updated Rule provides a decision-making framework for considering the broader safety and mobility impacts of work zones across all stages of a project. The updated regulation also will facilitate the implementation of appropriate strategies to help manage those impacts. All State and local governments that receive Federal-aid highway funding must implement the Rule by October 12, 2007. Updating the regulations is just one part of the solution. Ongoing outreach and development of detailed guidance are two methods FHWA is using to disseminate information. The other part of making work zones work better is for State and local transportation agencies to adopt and implement the updated Rule. This article gives an overview of the Rule and shares best practices from some of the States that are using innovative strategies to improve safety and mobility in work zones.