Work Zone Mobility and Safety Program
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Process Review Examples

Work Zone Process Review Toolbox

The Work Zone Process Review Toolbox contains tools to help you conduct an effective review. The first section of the Toolbox covers determining the goals and scope of a review, expected outcomes, team members, and data sources, and contains sets of potential questions that can be used to assess various work zone program areas during a review. The Resources section provides information on relevant training and some examples and tips from peers. The Toolbox also addresses Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about reviews.

Section 630.1008 of the Work Zone Safety and Mobility Rule requires agencies to conduct a process review at least every two years to assess the effectiveness of work zone safety and mobility procedures. The results of the review are intended to lead to improvements in work zone processes and procedures, data and information resources, and training programs so as to enhance efforts to address safety and mobility on current and future projects. More information can be found in Implementing the Rule on Work Zone Safety and Mobility.

The following examples are meant to assist agencies with developing their own process review guidelines.

Process Reviews

Webinar on Work Zone Process Reviews – held on October 31, 2011

  • Recording
  • Transcript (HTML, PDF 203KB)
  • Introduction Presentation, by Tracy Scriba, FHWA (HTML, PDF 302KB)
  • Iowa Presentation, by Jerry Roche, FHWA Iowa Division and Dan Sprengeler, Iowa DOT (HTML, PDF 299KB)
  • Colorado Presentation, by Dahir Egal, FHWA Colorado Division; K.C. Matthews, Colorado DOT; and San Lee, Colorado DOT (HTML, PDF 150KB)
  • Louisiana Presentation, by Betsey Tramonte, FHWA Louisiana Division and Barry Lacy, Louisiana DOTD (HTML, PDF 340KB)

Colorado Department of Transportation

The Colorado DOT (CDOT) FY2013 Work Zone Safety and Mobility Process Review (PDF 361KB) was conducted by a task force of CDOT and FHWA personnel that was formed in March 2012 and met monthly (twice per month during the 2012 Traffic Control Review (TCR) period) to review CDOT's work zone safety and mobility procedures. Six construction projects were reviewed in summer 2012 as part of the process review. The six projects received both a TCR field and office visit and also completed process review surveys. The survey is included as Appendix A of the process review report. The task force also collected comments made during the TCR from CDOT Region design personnel, construction project engineers, and traffic operations personnel, and Contractor traffic control supervisors (TCS) and construction superintendents. Upon completion and review of the surveys and comments by the review team, best practices and recommendations were documented. Results of the TCR and the surveys were presented to each CDOT residency and to maintenance staff. Any follow up actions as a result of the process review were documented and assigned to the appropriate CDOT branch for resolution.

Connecticut Department of Transportation

The Connecticut DOT (CTDOT) 2010 Work Zone Safety and Mobility Process Review (PDF 4MB) was conducted jointly by CTDOT and FHWA. The review consisted of two activities, the work zone mobility and safety self assessment and work zone field reviews of active projects. The Work Zone Field Review was initiated as an immediate and direct result of the Self Assessment that identified Program Evaluation as the area most in need of improvement for work zone safety and mobility in Connecticut. Work Zone Field Reviews for 10 active construction projects were conducted and documented in a separate report distributed by CTDOT for the 2010 construction season and included as an appendix to the process review. In addition to identifying several successful Connecticut practices for work zone safety and mobility, action items for improvement were also identified.

Michigan Department of Transportation

The Michigan DOT (MDOT) 2012 Work Zone Safety and Mobility Process Review (PDF 535KB) examined MDOT's progress in implementing the Work Zone Safety and Mobility Rule and identified best practices and areas in need of further development to improve the safety and efficiency of Michigan's work zones for motorists, workers, and pedestrians. The object of the review was to determine if MDOT's Work Zone Policy was functioning as an effective program, identify practices and procedures being used successfully to carry out MDOT's operational processes, and determine areas that were not functioning at an optimal level and what improvements should be made to address the shortfalls.

MDOT and FHWA (3 individuals from MDOT, 2 from FHWA) met on November 30, 2011 to determine a plan for the process review. From this meeting, the group developed a questionnaire to send around to MDOT employees who work with the mobility policy to help determine where things stand as a department and help focus the review teamís efforts. The questionnaire, included as Appendix I in the process review report, was then used to facilitate a series of listening sessions with all seven MDOT regions. Prior to the listening sessions, MDOT and FHWA had an idea of what the expected results would be. The main areas the group thought needed to be addressed were the criteria by which MDOT makes the determination of whether a project is significant, the amount of time that it takes to complete a TMP, and the amount of money that is added to maintenance of traffic (MOT) costs on projects. These were the main topics that MDOT's Traffic Incident and Work Zone Management Unit had received feedback on in the past. To avoid having the listening sessions focus on known issues, the team developed a list of solutions or ideas for these topics beforehand. Presenting the known topics in the listening sessions directed the focus on determining what else needed to be revised and where the team needed to further focus their efforts. MDOT also reviewed its work zone self assessment results to determine areas in need of improvement. The outcomes of these efforts were used to identify best practices and areas that need improvement.

Montana Department of Transportation

The Montana DOT (MDT) developed Process Review Guidelines as part of its Work Zone Safety and Mobility Guidelines. Information about MDT's process review guidelines can be found in Appendix B of MDT Work Zone Safety and Mobility: Goals and Objectives, Procedures, Guidelines (PDF 537KB). Under its Guidelines, MDT conducts periodic evaluation of construction zone policies, processes, procedures, and construction zone impacts to aid in the process of addressing and managing the safety and mobility impacts of construction zones. Some reviews may be limited to specific procedures (e.g., review payment methods for traffic control devices), while other reviews will be broader in scope (e.g., review overall performance measures of the construction zone safety and mobility goals and objectives). The review is lead by the MDT Construction Traffic Control Engineer and can answer some of the following questions:

  • How are construction zones performing with respect to mobility and safety?
  • Are the best possible decisions in planning, designing, and implementing construction zones being made?
  • Are customer expectations being met with respect to maintaining safety and mobility and minimizing business and community impacts?
  • Can areas for improvement be identified?
  • How have areas for improvement that were identified in the past been addressed?
  • Should policies/procedures be adjusted based on what has been experienced?

Traffic Control Reviews

Work zone traffic control reviews can be a rich source of information to use in conducting work zone process reviews. However, work zone traffic control reviews do not cover all the areas that a process review under the updated Rule should cover. For additional explanation, please refer to the frequently asked questions on this topic. Following are a few examples of this component of a process review.

Arizona Department of Transportation

The Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) has a quantifiable checklist process for ADOT administered construction projects to ensure that construction projects are thoroughly inspected and in compliance with State and Federal requirements. ADOT project inspectors and consultants use these lists, called Quantlists, to check, at established frequencies, a range of items including pavement materials, drainage facilities, bridge and box culvert structures, traffic control devices, work zone operations, roadside hardware compliance with MASH/NCHRP 350 crashworthiness standards, and other items. each item in the Quantlist, there is a reference to the governing specification, an assigned numerical value that indicates the level of priority, and a place for the inspector to enter comments and mark it as compliant/incompliant. Items in the work zone traffic control list include; pre-contstruction/preactivity meetings are held before the start of major traffic control changes and setup; traffic control plans address construction traffic inside the work zone including haul and construction access roads; there is an approved traffic control plan; the reason for reducing speed limits is on file; flags are mounted on signs; and the approved traffic control plan is being followed. There are also separate Quantlists for traffic control devices such as arrow panels and changeable message boards, pavement markings, flagging stations, temporary barriers/attenuators/sand barrels, and truck-mounted attenuators. The Quantlists help ensure that inspectors are aware of all the items that need to be inspected on a regular basis, help them prioritize their time, and minimize the possibility of items being overlooked/neglected. The web-based "ADOT Quantlist Application" is used to fill out and submit completed Quantlists. The Inspector's Daily Diary must indicate that a Quantlist has been completed and reviewed by the Project Supervisor. ADOT performs field inspections and regularly checks that Quantlists are being used correctly and consistently.

The Quantlists also serve as an effective work zone data collection and analysis tool, specifically for analyzing work zone traffic control procedures and strategies. ADOT provides reports on their Construction Group Intranet web page that are developed using data from completed Quantlists. These reports include a statistical analysis of each attribute in a Quantlist (statewide or by project). The data from the work zone traffic control related Quantlists can be used to help evaluate and improve traffic control procedures and strategies for future projects.

Colorado Department of Transportation

In July 2004, the Colorado DOT (CDOT) initiated its statewide Traffic Control Review (TCR) program in response to management concerns about the quality of work zone traffic control (WZTC). The purpose of the program is to evaluate the overall quality and effectiveness of WZTC throughout the Department, identify areas where improvement is needed, and facilitate open discussion of traffic control issues. Regions are expected to use the review results to address project-specific and region-wide issues. The review procedure (described in CDOT FY 2008 Quality Assurance Reviews for WZTC (HTML, DOC 44KB)) involves an on-site review of a sample of projects in each Region. For each review, a team that generally consists of both CDOT and FHWA staff performs a drive-through of the project site and records information and comments on a standard four-page TCR form (HTML, XLS 55KB). The team then assigns an overall quality rating, which defines traffic control effectiveness on the project site at the time of the review. Following each Region review, a debriefing meeting is held to discuss results.

Kansas Department of Transportation

The Kansas DOT (KDOT) uses a Traffic Control Review Team (TCRT) to review randomly-selected construction and maintenance work areas on the State Highway System and off-system construction projects to determine the effectiveness of traffic control procedures. A minimum of three Districts are reviewed each year, resulting in a biannual review of each District. TCRT members see how traffic control is being implemented and maintained in the field; identify any problem areas in the standard plans, specifications, and individual traffic control plans; and assess if field practices meet appropriate practices and criteria. An overview of commonly found areas of concern is shared with all the Districts and key KDOT central office staff and is used as a learning tool that helps KDOT achieve high quality traffic control while maintaining uniformity across the State. More information can be found in the KDOT Traffic Control Review Policy.

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