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An AFAD Enhances Roadside Safety in the Aftermath of Winter Storms

As January turns to February, some folks across North America are gearing up for another phase of winter. The thermometer can continue to drop in February, and chilly temperatures often bring more heavy snow fall and ice storms to various towns, cities, and states.  If you’ve ever experienced all four seasons, you’ll know that snow and ice can make roads difficult to navigate! And despite the occasional luxury of a snow day, complete with snowmen and a few rounds of hot chocolate, winter can be messy! Road workers and clean-up crews will work overtime to repair the damage on telephone lines, hydro lines, and buildings, caused by winter storms.

We’re always thinking of our road workers! If you’re an employer or employee who works outdoors, dressing for the cold means more than wearing balaclavas and ski-doo mitts! With visibility and road conditions affected by falling snow, North America Traffic is proud to supply workers and employers with the Automated Flagger Assistance Device (AFAD). We think an AFAD should be a part of your crew’s year-round attire! Keeping flaggers and road crews safe is always on-trend, and roadworkers and drivers will benefit from the extra protection of the AFAD well past winter.

What makes an AFAD so attractive for employers and their employees? Well, for starters, the term “automated flagger assistance devices” probably takes more time to say than it does to set up! The AFAD removes human controllers or flaggers from dangerous and busy roadways, and lets the operator conduct the flow of traffic from a safe distance. Versatility and safety make the AFAD a perfect addition to your road crew.

Our Road Workers Are Still at Risk!

Workplace regulations and safety devices aren’t restrictions; they’re an advantage! Safety precautions mean that workers can go about their day productively, without any reservations about their own well-being. It’s up to everyone (employers, civilians, politicians, and workers) to uphold and demand health and safety standards.

But preventing injuries and fatalities takes conscious effort. In fact, you might wonder, how something like an AFAD can make a difference.  

Consider this news story from December 2019: An Ohio flagger was directing traffic around a construction site. Unfortunately, a vehicle collided with the flagger, as well as a construction vehicle. Two workers were hospitalized because of this incident and, tragically, the flagger did not survive.

We can’t control the weather or oncoming traffic, but we can do our best to avoid workplace accidents. And while citizens must be cautious around construction zones, making an AFAD a mandatory part of the workplace means that we can protect workers from hard-to-predict areas, especially when road conditions are poor in winter.  

Worker Safety Reaches New Heights with OSHA in 2019

In the midst of dwindling temperatures, we’re happy to report that the final month of 2019 saw worker safety reach new heights: A December Trade Release from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), stated that 2019 had a record amount of  “inspections,” and “record amount of compliance assistance” compared with previous years. OSHA’s push for worker safety does more than just spread awareness to employers–its standards ensure that workers are getting the resources they need to enforce safe workplace regulations, too. It’s our hope that AFAD and OSHA training will be obligatory for all workers and workplaces.

Loren Sweatt, who is the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health, was pleased to announce that OHSA’s personnel “contributed to a memorable year of protecting our nation’s workers,” by helping 1,392,611 workers obtain, and gain access to, necessary training.

Employers have come a long way in their efforts, too, thanks to OSHA’s regulatory standards and programs, like the On-Site Consultation Program. By ensuring that resources and equipment are available to business owners and the public, OSHA can effectively reshape the way we think about safety.

Automated Flagger Assistance Device and Roadside Safety

We’re thrilled with OSHA’s efforts to date and are eager to see North America Traffic contribute to further progress in 2020. We’re optimistic that OSHA’s efforts will allow employers and workers to lead the way in safety by implementing equipment like the Automated Flagger Assistance Device.

Imagine the difference we could make if there was at least one AFAD at every road work site in North America.

Did you know? OSHA’s workplace consultations saved “3.2 million workers from potential harm” in 2019. That’s an impressive number! But let’s not stop there; North America Traffic is committed to seeing that every worker thrives on the job.

Remember: there’s no such thing as “too safe.” Protecting your employees is as simple as A-F-A-D. Get in touch with North America Traffic today to learn more about our products, or find a dealer near you! Let’s make our worksites safe for everyone!