2018 Alabama Rural Road Safety Conference

Posted by on Oct 9, 2018

By: Jeff Stephenson

This week, Becky White and I had the opportunity to represent Sain Associates at the 5th Annual Alabama Rural Road Safety Conference at Lake Guntersville State Park Lodge. This conference is for those who are responsible for the design, maintenance, and safety of rural roads. The attendees received instruction on available tools, countermeasures, and processes to improve safety on their roads. Attendees included city and county engineers, public works officials, transportation planners and engineers, state and federal DOT personnel, and university faculty. The presentations were typically 30-45 minutes each and covered a variety of topics, including: updates on Alabama’s Safety Technical Assistance for Cities and Counties (STACC) Program and Critical Analysis Reporting Environment (CARE) , GIS safety applications, selecting countermeasures based on crash analysis, application of high friction surface treatment (HFST), performing safety analysis with limited data, and rural road speed management. The conference also featured a workshop on developing a safety plan for county roads as well as a presentation on Elmore County’s Safety Plan.

This year’s conference was a joint meeting with the Alabama Section of the Institute of the Transportation Engineers’ (ALSITE). The ALSITE portion of the technical program featured presentations on railroad preemption at signalized intersections, effectiveness of adaptive signals, and the state of Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) in Alabama. The ALSITE Fall Business Meeting was conducted at the conclusion of the conference.

I have been attending ALSITE meetings for many years, but this was the first time I have attended the Rural Road Conference. I came away very impressed. Every single presentation included content that is relevant to the types of projects that we do at Sain Associates, and a few of the presentations included information on actual projects Sain designed. And as if that wasn’t good enough, being able to walk outside during breaks and have a spectacular view of Lake Guntersville certainly doesn’t hurt the overall experience.

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