Construction remains one of the biggest industries in the world. In fact, it’s estimated that it generates over $360 billion every year, creating an impressive 9% of Australia’s Gross Domestic product!
However, when you’re undertaking any type of construction project you’ll need to be aware that traffic will be increasing to and from the site. In addition, construction vehicles are generally large and some suffer from poor visibility. That makes it particularly important to have a good traffic control plan. It’s essential for the safety of the workers and the public.
Fortunately, it’s easy to create a good traffic control plan, as long as you allow for the following:
Your workforce needs to be seen. It doesn’t matter if they are driving a construction vehicle, walking around on-site, or directing the traffic. The right hi-vis workwear will help to ensure they are seen by everyone. This can avoid many nasty accidents, especially in poor light or a lack of visibility from the cab of a truck.
The next most important element of your traffic control plan is to analyze the flow of traffic past your construction site. It indicates the scale of the issue. You need to know approximately how many vehicles go past the construction site every day. It’s also a good idea to know the peak flow hours and to know if more are going in one direction than the other. This is often the case when people are commuting.
Knowing this information will allow you to calculate how many cars should be let through in each direction when using traffic lights or manual traffic control signals. Knowing the flow rate ensures you can calculate times for your traffic lights. This will help o maintain the best possible flow of traffic.
Create Your Plan
You need to start with the facts but then you must draw up a plan that highlights the entry and exit points, the intended flow rates, and the most obvious risks.
You’ll want to define an entry point and then make sure there is at least 30m from this point on either side, this is where vehicles will need to stop and wait as part of the traffic control plan.
You can add a buffer zone but the distance should never be greater than 100m. You’re looking to keep the distance covered by traffic control as short as possible while maintaining safety standards.
Don’t forget, if you’re undertaking road construction this area may need to move during the day.
Your worker’s vehicles and construction vehicles need to get to your site and may need to be parked. It’s important to consider the best parking options to maximize traffic flow while maintaining safety. This may mean creating car-sharing schemes to minimize the parking needed. The exact details will depend on the construction project you’re undertaking.
If you’re using traffic lights don’t forget that they can experience problems. You need to assess all the risks and devise appropriate backup plans. This will ensure the traffic keeps moving and your project keeps going.
Spending a few moments devising your traffic control plan can save you a lot of hassle and accidents. It’s worth it.