Roadway Safety Innovation

Innovation in the roadway safety industry

Outsiders of the transportation infrastructure industry may look to autonomous vehicles as an icon of innovation on the roadways, but for state Department of Transportation (DOT) officials, manufacturers, suppliers, and contractors in the roadway safety and infrastructure industry, innovation is not a stationary achievement. It is much more than a mile marker and not as easily defined.

With different perspectives and priorities, industry stakeholders are finding that in addition to new technologies, innovation is heavily reliant on communication between entities. Industry leaders are working together to move forward and ATSSA is no different. The association works year-round to progress and develop creative solutions for all of its initiatives including highlighting innovative products and technologies, training, and ATSSA membership.

One innovative effort ATSSA is involved in is a joint initiative with the Transportation Research Board (TRB) Standing Committee on Traffic Control Devices (AHB50). Both ATSSA and TRB sponsor and conduct an exciting design competition, the Traffic Control Device (TCD) Student Challenge, to promote innovation and stimulate ideas in the traffic control devices area with a goal to improve operations and safety.

Find recent updates on the latest innovations in the resource list below and be sure to check back for updates.

Exhibit at ATSSA's Annual Traffic Expo


Do you have an innovative roadway safety product? Exhibitors can showcase their innovations in the New Products Rollout at the Annual Convention & Traffic Expo. Products released after Jan. 1 of this year qualify for entry. Twenty will be accepted for the New Product Listing and just 12 will be accepted for presentation to a panel of judges. The top three products will earn an Innovation Award that will be announced during the Convention.


Learn more about featuring your innovative product to key industry professionals. View videos of last year's entries and award winners.






Biden expected to choose Buttigieg as transportation secretary

President-elect Joe Biden will be nominating former presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg as Secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT), according to multiple reports.

Buttigieg, who is also the former mayor of South Bend, Ind., rose to national prominence after a surging presidential run in his bid for the Democratic nomination earlier this year. Buttigieg appears to have emerged from among contenders for the position such as Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

During his presidential campaign, Buttigieg introduced an infrastructure plan that garnered support across the transportation industry.

ATSSA Vice President of Engagement Nate Smith congratulated the former mayor on his nomination.

“Once he is officially nominated and confirmed by the U.S. Senate next year, ATSSA looks forward to working with Mayor Buttigieg on enacting a long-term, roadway safety-focused transportation bill, Smith said. “During the 2020 presidential campaign, Mayor Buttigieg routinely referenced the need to invest in America’s infrastructure, and his own campaign had a vibrant focus on roadway safety.

“His campaign called for a solvent Highway Trust Fund, national Vision Zero strategy (similar to ATSSA’s Toward Zero Deaths initiative), bicycle and pedestrian safety priorities, rural road safety investments, and increasing funding for the Highway Safety Improvement Program. These strategies all stem from the ATSSA policy playbook, which our members have been advocating on for decades. We congratulate Mayor Buttigieg on his likely nomination and look forward to working with him to reduce roadway fatalities and serious injuries toward zero.”

ATSSA’s Government Relations team will track this nomination, along with others within USDOT, as Biden continues the transition process.

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