What Are The Differences Between The Most Common Traffic Control Devices For Road Construction? » Traffic Safety Resource Center (2023)

If you drive on or walk near public roads like city streets or highways, then you have probably encountered a number of traffic control devices around construction zones and other areas.

Construction workers have many traffic channelizing devices to help direct traffic patterns around dangerous areas. The primary role of the traffic devices is to warn drivers about upcoming dangers in the road or immediate areas.

Traffic control devices have been proven to increase awareness for drivers while also improving the safety for pedestrians, drivers, and construction workers.There are many different types of traffic channelizing devices that can be used in a variety of situations.

What Are The Differences Between The Most Common Traffic Control Devices For Road Construction? » Traffic Safety Resource Center (1)

Traffic channelizing devices are part of a comprehensive effort to make public transportation safer and more efficient as drivers pass through temporary traffic control zones. Knowing the right type, size, and color of warning devices is vital to ensure public safety for work to take place.

Understanding The Basics & Importance Of Traffic Cones

As road construction projects continue to increase across the U.S., traffic cones are being utilized for temporary traffic projects or other areas where immediate dangers could impact drivers and pedestrians.

Traffic cones are lightweight, easy to transport, and highly visible in all types of weather conditions and even in low light. This makes them the perfect channelizer for many situations, and because of this drivers encounter traffic safety cones more frequently than any other traffic channelizer.

(Video) Work Zone Safety - Part 2 - Traffic Control Devices

What Are The Differences Between The Most Common Traffic Control Devices For Road Construction? » Traffic Safety Resource Center (2)

Traffic safety conescommonly come in a bright orange color for greater visibility, but they’re also available in several bright colors like lime green. The colors should be easily seen in the inclement weather and sun.

Cones vary in sizes depending on the placement and needs. Larger traffic cones are used for freeway and highway places since they help drivers that are moving at higher speeds because they help drivers identify their presence from a long distance away.

Traffic cones are made up of a base, which is typically black, that sits on the ground and is molded into the slanted orange cone material. All traffic cones are engineered to be hollow which makes them lightweight and prevents severe damage to vehicles or even individuals which may come in contact with them.

What Are The Different Types Of Traffic Safety Equipment?

While traffic cones are the most commonly used traffic devices on public roads, there are different types of traffic equipment that can be used in a variety of situations. Different traffic channelizers are engineered to be used in specific locations because of their shape, weight, and visibility.

Here are more detailed descriptions about each of these traffic management control devices.

(Video) Traffic Control Safety

Traffic Channelizer Drums

Traffic channelizer drums are made from lightweight, flexible, and malleable materials that make them perfect for use on highways or other areas where vehicles are traveling at high speeds. At a minimum, channelizer drums need to be at least 36 inches tall with at least an 18-inch width to ensure they grab the attention of drivers who are traveling at high speeds.

What Are The Differences Between The Most Common Traffic Control Devices For Road Construction? » Traffic Safety Resource Center (3)

The Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) also states that traffic channelizer drums cannot be made of steel, and markings on the device need to follow strict regulations of retroreflective stips and other trademarks to be used on public roads.

Delineator Tubes

Delineator Tubes are tall, skinny channelizers that come in a range of colors. This traffic safety equipment is outfitted with alternating white segments on the device to ensure their visibility in different weather conditions and varying lighting at nighttime.

Unlike other traffic control markers, delineator posts are best used in locations with low or minimal vehicle traffic. Instead, these channelizers are often used to warn drivers in areas with lower speeds, or used in areas that are restricted to pedestrians.

Traffic Barricades

A traffic barricade is a portable or fixed device that comes in variations with one to three rails and appropriate markings. This traffic control device is used to control traffic by closing, restricting, or delineating the right-of-way for vehicles.

What Are The Differences Between The Most Common Traffic Control Devices For Road Construction? » Traffic Safety Resource Center (4)

Based on the speed, intent, and other variables of a situation there are different types of traffic barricades.

(Video) Traffic Controls For Short Term Work Zones

  • Type I and Type II barricades should be used in situations where traffic is maintained in areas with temporary construction. Type I barricades are often used on conventional roads and city streets.
  • Type II barricades have two sets of reflective tape and have more visibility.
  • Type III barricades are used on roadways that are temporarily or permanently closed, and this type of barrier can extend entirely across a road.

Portable Barriers

Often times, construction zones and other areas require temporary barriers to restrict access for vehicles and pedestrians physically. The need for movable obstacles like a Jersey Barrier should be determined based on the protective requirements and engineering of a location.

Many construction zones use Jersey Barriers to route pedestrians from accessing sidewalks or other areas that could pose dangers. However, some construction zones may require portable barriers to channelize traffic. When these devices are used to redirect traffic in low-speed areas, and they must be supplemented with standard delineators, channelizing devices, and pavement markings.

Traffic Cones

Traffic safety cones are the most common traffic control device that you will see near construction zones or other areas of immediate danger. Traffic cones are often used to divide traffic lanes, divide opposing traffic lanes, and offer short-term maintenance and utility work.

What Are The Differences Between The Most Common Traffic Control Devices For Road Construction? » Traffic Safety Resource Center (5)

These channelizing devices are often used in areas where cars are traveling at lower speeds, and they follow strict size, width, and markings based on their location and other needs. Depending on wind speed and traffic speeds, traffic cones can be outfitted with specialized cone weights to provide additional stability.

Traffic Safety Devices To Improve Safety For Everyone

As the U.S. economy continues to grow and more drivers hit the road each year, different traffic control devices will be used to help keep construction workers, pedestrians, and drivers safe.

In construction zones, drivers need to be aware of lane closures, detours, and moving equipment that could disrupt regular traffic patterns and other dangers. You can use this information to help make construction zones safer for workers and drivers, and help prevent accidents by using the correct traffic management equipment in the proper locations!

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(Video) Traffic Control Safety


What are the 3 types of traffic control devices? ›

Traffic Control Devices include street signs, traffic signals, and road markings. These signs, signals, and stripes guide drivers in navigation and control of their vehicles.

What are the most commonly used traffic control devices? ›

Traffic safety cones are the most common traffic control device that you will see near construction zones or other areas of immediate danger.

What is the most common traffic control standard? ›

A : Yes. In Title 23 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Part 655.603 states that the MUTCD is the national standard for all traffic control devices installed on any street, highway, or bicycle trail open to public travel.

What are the 5 main components of a traffic control zone? ›

The temporary traffic control zone generally has five sections: the advanced warning area, the transition area, the buffer area, the work area, and the termination area.

What are 5 common traffic control devices? ›

Devices typically used include speed bumps, barricades to block streets, turn prohibitions, stop signs, and raised pavement markers. Traffic restraint also includes programs to foster bicycle and pedestrian travel.

What are the different types of traffic control briefly explain them? ›

The major types of traffic control devices used are- traffic signs, road markings , traffic signals and parking control.

What are the 2 types of control devices? ›

Open-loop and closed-loop control

There are two common classes of control action: open loop and closed loop. In an open-loop control system, the control action from the controller is independent of the process variable.

What are the four main components of the traffic control system? ›

The components described in the reading include the user, the detector, the controller, and the display. The Traffic Control Process Diagram illustrates the interactions of these four components.

What are the main functions of traffic control devices? ›

Road traffic control devices are markers, signs and signal devices used to inform, guide and control traffic, including pedestrians, motor vehicle drivers and bicyclists. These devices are usually placed adjacent, over or along the highways, roads, traffic facilities and other public areas that require traffic control.

What are the 4 Es of traffic safety? ›

4 E's Road Safety :- The main thrust of accident prevention and control across the world has been on 4 E's vis (i) Education; (ii) Enforcement; (iii) Engineering; and (iv) Environment and Emergency care of road accident victims.

Which of the following are requirements of traffic control devices? ›

To be effective, a traffic control device should meet five basic requirements: (1) fulfill a need, (2) command attention, (3) convey a clear, simple meaning, (4) command respect from road users, and (5) give adequate time for proper response.

What are the types of traffic capacity? ›

Possible Capacity: When a particular period is considered, the number of vehicles or the volume can pass through under the prevailing conditions. Practical Capacity: This is basically the number of vehicles that can pass on a roadway lane without much traffic, and at that particular time, the density is measured.

What are the 3 main components of the highway transportation system? ›

Motor vehicles, streets and highways, and people are the components of the Highway Transportation System (HTS).

What are the basic elements of road safety? ›

Based on literature, the following seven risk domains were considered to be essential: alcohol and drugs, speed, protective systems, daytime running lights, vehicle, roads and trauma management.

What is the difference between a Type 1 and Type 2 FAS? ›

Type I FAS are large multifunctional enzymes capable of catalysing all of the reactions of fatty acid biosynthesis (Smith, 1994). In contrast, for the type II FAS, each reaction is catalysed by a discrete enzyme (Magnuson et al. 1993).

What are safety control devices? ›

Safety control devices are used to directly start and stop dangerous machine movements.

What are the main types of vehicle devices? ›

Operating vehicle control devices – Controls used for the operation of a vehicle, including steering wheel, gear selector lever, parking brake, cruise/speed control, ignition switch, and accelerator and brake pedals.

What would be an example of a traffic control device? ›

Som examples are stop signes, stop lights, speed limit signs, road construction signs, detour signs, markings on pavement, etc.

What are the 3 basic components of an automatic control system? ›

An automated system consists of three basic elements: (1) power to accomplish the process and operate the system, (2) a program of instructions to direct the process, and (3) a control system to actuate the instructions.

What are the four types of traffic? ›

We're going to explore four types of website traffic today:
  • Direct traffic.
  • Referral traffic.
  • Organic traffic.
  • Social traffic.
Mar 6, 2020

What are the responsibilities of a traffic controller at a construction site? ›

eliminating reversing vehicles or minimising the related risks • ensuring vehicles and pedestrians are visible to each other • using traffic signs, and • developing and implementing a traffic management plan. The best way to protect people is to make sure people and vehicles cannot interact.

What are the three types of temporary devices to help the flow of traffic around a work zone? ›

A Guide to Essential Traffic Control Devices for Temporary Work Zones
  • 2.1 Traffic Control Signs.
  • 2.2 Traffic Bollards.
  • 2.3 Light Bars and Personal Safety Lights.
  • 2.4 Stop and Slow Paddles.
  • 2.5 Traffic Control Flares.
  • 2.6 Traffic Wands.
Feb 27, 2019

What are control devices and their purposes? ›

Controls and Controllers are mechanical, electro-mechanical, or electronic devices which use input signals to change conditions or values in processes or oversee access to buildings, gated areas, etc.

What are the 4 E's to prevent accidents? ›

The four E's of Accident Prevention
  • Engineering.
  • Education.
  • Enforcement.
  • Encouragement.

What are the 3 E's of safety OSHA? ›

When it comes to safety the person who is at risk for injury must be aware of the hazard and what can be done to control the hazard and prevent injury. This is one of the three E's of safety: Evaluation, Education, and Enforcement.

What are the 3 Es in engineering? ›

The History of the Three E's

The transportation profession has been organized around these three Es of Engineering, Education, and Enforcement since the early days of the National Safety Council in 1925, when the rise of the automobile began to dominate city planning and infrastructure investment.

What are three reasons for traffic control devices? ›

Six Reasons Why Traffic Control Systems Are Important
  • #1. Ensures Safety of Drivers, Passengers, and Pedestrians. ...
  • #2. Organizes Traffic Movement and Order. ...
  • #3. Reduce Severity of Accidents. ...
  • #4. Maintaining Order in The Height of Traffic. ...
  • #5. ...
  • #6. ...
  • Diablo Controls: Shop Traffic Control Devices Online Now!
Feb 1, 2019

What are the 2 types of time related traffic controls? ›

Types of Control
  • Pretimed, and.
  • Semi- and fully traffic actuated.
May 3, 2022

What is the greatest factor in traffic? ›

Driver error contributes to 94 percent of traffic accidents, according to a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) report. Of that percentage, recognition errors account for 41 percent of crashes.

How is traffic capacity measured? ›

Traffic capacity is the maximum traffic density a road can accommodate at a given speed without delay. Before the actual capacity of a roadway can be determined, it it necessary to find the theoretical capacity. The formula N = 1760V divided by I is used for finding the theoretical capacity for one lane of a roadway.

What are the five 5 types of road transports? ›

Examples of road transport: Buses, rickshaws, trucks, scooters, motorcycles, and cars.

What are the 3 things everyone one must have with them when operating a vehicle? ›

License, Insurance, and Registration

It may seem obvious, but you should always have your license, registration, and insurance in the car whenever you are driving it.

What are the three main characteristics used to define the fundamental relationship of traffic flow? ›

To better represent traffic flow, relationships have been established between the three main characteristics: (1) flow, (2) density, and (3) velocity. These relationships help in planning, design, and operations of roadway facilities.

What is safety in road construction? ›

Personal protective equipment including hard hats, steel-toed boots, highly visible clothing, and, depending on the noise levels, hearing protection. All PPE should meet or exceed the American National Standards Institute's (ANSI) developed standards.

What are the 5 principles of safety? ›

The 5 ICL Safety Principles are:

Commitment and Engagement. Risk Management. Organizational Competence. Learning Organization.

What does FAS stand for in traffic control? ›

8.28. Placing the Flashing Arrow Sign (FAS)

What is the difference between a shadow vehicle and a barrier vehicle? ›

Barrier vehicles may be loaded with sand, gravel or fine aggregate to enhance the vehicle's gross weight. Shadow Vehicle: A shadow vehicle is for mobile operations only. The shadow vehicle shall be equipped and meet the same size and weight requirements as a barrier vehicle.

What are the 3 types of operations Caltrans performs? ›

Caltrans TMPs are categorized into three types based on project characteristics and projected delay: Blanket TMP, Minor TMP, and Major TMP. Table 1 lists the types of conditions and possible strategies for each of these three TMP categories.

What are examples of traffic control devices? ›

Signs, signals, pavement markings, cones, barricades and warning lights are designed with dedicat- ed colors, shapes and sizes based on the different functions they provide. They regulate, guide and warn vehicle and pedestrian traffic about road conditions.

What are the 3 Es in traffic engineering? ›

The three important E's of road safety are Education, Engineering and Enforcement.

What are the simple safety devices on the road? ›

The items include:
  • Warning triangle (c-caution)
  • Fire extinguisher.
  • Jack.
  • Spare tyre.
  • First Aid kit.
  • Wheel spanner.
  • Water.
  • Hydraulic.

What are the 4 Es of safety? ›

The Four E's of Safety and Compliance: Education, Enforcement, Engineering, and Employment.

What are the 5 E of road safety? ›

5Es of Road Safety: Education, Enforcement, Engineering, Environment & Emergency Care.


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