AAA Urges Service Providers Nationally To Suit Up For Safetys Sake

Orlando, Fla. – 8/24/2004

AAA is highlighting the life-saving importance of wearing the newly recommended high-visibility safety apparel while on duty.

According to the Federal Highway Administration, there are more than 1,000 fatalities and 20,000 injuries in highway work zones each year.

“Roadside assistance professionals make a living in helping bring motorists to safety. Yet this group contributes to more than 2,500 visibility related injuries each year, and we are concerned these figures are rising,” said Margaret Pittlekow, managing director of AAA’s Emergency Road Service Network.

“This summer, AAA-affiliated service personnel expected to aid more than 7.5 million stranded members. So, essentially there is no better time than the present to start taking every precaution to ensure your safety and that of your employees. Many close calls can be averted if workers wear their safety gear while on the job site,” she said.

As a well-known advocate for motorists’ safety, AAA is shedding light on this issue in an attempt to heighten awareness and assist in helping reduce the number of unnecessary fatalities in our nation’s highway work zones.

Recent changes just released in the Federal Highway Administration’s Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices strongly recommend that all workers exposed to the risks of moving roadway traffic or construction equipment wear this apparel.

Additionally, this newly updated manual now mandates that “flaggers” wear these garments any time of the day. As an example, a towing operator flagging traffic at an accident scene would be considered a “flagger” and would be subject to adhering to this new policy. It is up to the business owners themselves to determine what risk category pertains to their operation.

To aid in this transition, the Federal Highway Administration has instituted a three-year implementation period prior to this new policy taking effect.

As North America’s largest motoring and leisure travel organization, AAA provides its over 47 million members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services. Since its founding in 1902, AAA has been a leader and advocate for the safety and security of all travelers.

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