Innovation

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

NPRO

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.



Resources

TRIP report highlights Georgia roadway transportation projects, additional funding needed
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TRIP report highlights Georgia roadway transportation projects, additional funding needed

A press conference held last week by the Georgia Transportation Alliance and TRIP, a national transportation research group, highlighted the need for increased transportation funding to improve roadways and enhance safety.

TRIP released the report titled “Modernizing Georgia’s Transportation System: Progress and Challenges in Providing Safe, Efficient and Well-Maintained Roads, Highways and Bridges”, which discusses Georgia’s specific roadway infrastructure challenges, examining the impact of Georgia’s 2015 Transportation Funding Act (TFA) and future unfunded needs.

According to the report, TFA provides $5.4 billion in funding for Georgia from 2016-2021, for several roadway and bridge infrastructure projects. Several of these projects will be completed or underway by the completion of the Act in 2021.

“Thanks to the support of elected leaders who understand the critical role that our state’s infrastructure plays in our economy and quality of life, we are making historic levels of investment and are able to better plan for future growth. That said, additional funding is without question still necessary to fully meet our needs, and we are hopeful we will be able to attract federal support while identifying additional state and local resources,” said Georgia Department of Transportation Commissioner Russell McMurray.

While some projects will be completed with the TFA funding, more money will be needed to complete specific roadway infrastructure projects.

Traffic fatalities in Georgia have increased by 25% from 2014 to 2017, claiming the lives of 6,876 people between 2013 and 2017. Georgia’s population is anticipated to increase by 2.5 million people by 2020 and vehicle travel in the state has grown to the second highest in the nation since 2013, according to the report.

"While the recent influx of funding has allowed Georgia to make strides in improving its transportation system, more work still needs to be done to accommodate and capitalize on the tremendous growth projected for the state,” said Will Wilkins, TRIP’s Executive Director. “Georgia will need to continue to make transportation investment a top priority."

The funding and calls for additional money for roadway infrastructure projects provide opportunities for ATSSA member companies in Georgia and the surrounding area.

ATSSA member American Signal Company, based out of Atlanta, shared their thoughts on the report and how the roadways impact the success of their business.

“The size of American Signal Company’s primary products - portable message sign and work zone ITS equipment - requires that they ship on open flatbed trucks. Every year we find our freight costs rising - a cost that directly affects our ability to remain competitive in the marketplace. Road surface conditions directly impact freight haulers’ fuel expenditures, tire wear, and truck maintenance costs, so investing in additional roadway infrastructure in Georgia is crucial for our business and businesses like ours,” said Scott Covington, special projects coordinator for American Signal Company.

To learn more about Georgia’s transportation system and specific projects, read the report here.

Photo featured in report, courtesy of TRIP.

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