Preparing a traffic management plan (TMP) is essential for any construction project to ensure the safety of all workers at the job site. They’re also hugely important for maintaining the safety of pedestrians and motorists across the general public.
Within these outlines, risk assessment needs to be conducted to find out what could cause harm. Management should inspect the job site thoroughly to identify all of the areas where vehicles and pedestrians interact. These tips should locate all of the potential risks and then take action to prevent or eliminate them. Doing so ensures protection from being struck by vehicles or moving plant and machinery.
What is the difference between a pedestrian and a traffic plan?
Consideration and forecasting for pedestrians is an integral part of a traffic management plan (TMP). Your TMP needs to address all forms of road flow, which means vehicles, machinery, moving plant equipment, workers, pedestrians, and any other third-party that might need to have access through or around your job site.
These are not separate; a complete, compliant and safe TMP includes allocated thoroughfares, traffic rules, signage and methods to keep vehicles and people separated.
What’s included in a traffic/pedestrian management plan?
There are several controls that you can include in your plan that will help achieve safe workplace operations, including:
- Established walkways: These should be kept away from vehicles and machinery wherever possible and be marked with signage for safety and direction.
- Exclusion zones: For areas where equipment is operating, there should be marked and allocated exclusions zones where people cannot go because the risk is too high.
- Pedestrian-only zones: Any area that is high traffic, like entrances, amenities etc, should be pedestrian-only, and all vehicles should be excluded from entering these areas. Places where vehicles and mobile machinery are operating should be separated by barriers, barricades, chain or bollards. There needs to be proper supervision to ensure that vehicles do not breach these barriers.
- Parking areas: Designated parking spaces for workers should be allocated in areas where there is no contact with vehicles, plant and moving machinery on the construction site.
- Crossing points: Instances where people need to cross a roadway should be avoided wherever possible. Where this is not possible, these walkways should be highly visible, signed and included lighting so that drivers and pedestrians have a clear understanding of when it is safe to cross and can see each other.
- Exits and entrances: All vehicle access points that cross a walkway should include mirrors, stop signs and traffic control to ensure complete safety.
- Loading and unloading zones: Because these areas are used by both vehicles and pedestrians, this is one area on a job site where there is most likely to be an instance. Proper risk management and controls are essential in these spaces to minimise that risk.
The TMP should also include plans and controls that will limit the volume of reversing vehicles. Limited visibility associated with reversing creates hazards and risks to pedestrians. The plan should also limit vehicle movement to only the necessary amount and ensuring that all thoroughfares are kept clear and without obstruction.
When should it be reviewed?
Traffic management plans and the associated pedestrian management is not a one-off process. If you are working on a new construction or job site, a new TMP will need to be carried out for this new site’s unique layout and hazards. For ongoing operations at the same job site, the TMP needs to be regularly monitored and reviewed to account for workplace changes.
Every incident or near-miss should be reported and documented during every construction operation to understand contributing factors and how the TMP can be improved for the following construction site.
Updates to your TMP should also include:
- Reports should be regularly developed and reviewed to identify trends and areas for improvement in your next TMP.
- Update the movement and flow of vehicles and people and how they interact with each other in a bid to limit that frequency of interaction and create safer operations in your workplace.
- Short-term traffic changes and mobile work situations will need to have risk assessments, control, and management put in place.
- The roles and responsibilities of each person in the workforce will need to be assessed and updated. Has everyone been correctly trained? Do they understand their responsibilities? Have people changed roles? Do new management or supervisor positions need to be created? Do people have the right skills for their role, e.g. traffic control?
- Maps of the job site will need to be updated to include any changes to traffic routes, pedestrian walkways, entrances and exits, barriers and signage, loading and unloading zones and parking zones.
- Emergency contact details will need to be checked and updated as required.
- Every review of the TMP should include fresh risk assessment and proper consultation with all relevant workers and plant operators. The review should also factor in your supply chain, which provides for delivery drivers and any other third parties that might drive a vehicle onto your job site.
Can I write it myself?
It is a work manager’s legal responsibility to ensure they have an appropriate TMP for every work activity or a community event. It is imperative that you have a TMP that is prepared by a qualified professional. You will be liable for any incident that occurs at your job site, and it is the purpose of a TMP to help you manage these risks.
There is so much to cover and many layers of compliance regarding keeping everyone safe on your job site. It is best to enlist The Traffic Plans Company to ensure every required element of the traffic management plan is included.
Our experienced team operates within VicRoads traffic management plan guidelines and works in consultation with you and your workers to ensure your TMP is comprehensive and checks off every potential hazard. For complete safety at your construction, workplace or job site, contact our team and request a plan today.