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Improving traffic management for greater road safety

Wednesday, 16 May 2018, Kuching: The Traffic Management Unit has come up with additional proposals to enhance the flagging activity at all 11 works packages to improve the safety of road users who commute along the construction stretch of Pan Borneo Highway Sarawak

Within three months since it was set up in February 2018, the new Traffic Management Unit under the purview of the Project Delivery Partner’s QAQC Department has gone down to the field or “turun padang”, wasting no time, to propose additional measures.

Among these are to ensure that the flagging activity strictly complies with the standard operating procedures (SOP).

“The unit will continue to visit all works packages to ensure they strictly comply to SOPs. This includes not positioning ingress and egress areas at ‘blind spots’ which include cornering and climbing areas. Ingress and Egress are locations where construction heavy vehicles enter and exit the main road.”

“Otherwise road users are in danger of experiencing poor visibility of in-coming and out-going vehicles from the construction sites,” said Traffic Management Manager Masdi Baharom.

Positioning flagmen is also being improved. The visible distance of a flagman to where the first target vehicle must stop, he said, had been set at a minimum of 100m. This is to ensure that there is sufficient distance to slow down before the intended stopping point.

“Traffic Management Officers stationed at the respective works packages have been instructed to fully ensure that two flagmen are stationed at each bound or lane direction. They should be located about 50m away each from the ingress and egress areas.”

“Flagmen must also be visible to each other while carrying out the Stop and Go duty,” he explained.

The ingress and egress areas, he said, must be located at the centre of both flagmen.

“While carrying out their duties, all flagmen are required to use proper Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) and flagging devices.

“At the same time, we have proposed for one watchman or buddy to control construction vehicles which goes in and out from the construction site.

“Engagement with authorities such as Police and the Road Safety Department is also being done to ensure that everyone, regardless of whether they are our workers or road users, are safe while driving along the Federal Trunk Road which is currently being upgraded to a highway standard,” he added.