National Academies Press: OpenBook
« Previous: Summary
Page 3
Suggested Citation:"Chapter 1 - Introduction." National Research Council. 2023. Practices to Motivate Safe Behaviors with Highway Construction and Maintenance Crews. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/27176.
×
Page 3
Page 4
Suggested Citation:"Chapter 1 - Introduction." National Research Council. 2023. Practices to Motivate Safe Behaviors with Highway Construction and Maintenance Crews. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/27176.
×
Page 4
Page 5
Suggested Citation:"Chapter 1 - Introduction." National Research Council. 2023. Practices to Motivate Safe Behaviors with Highway Construction and Maintenance Crews. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/27176.
×
Page 5

Below is the uncorrected machine-read text of this chapter, intended to provide our own search engines and external engines with highly rich, chapter-representative searchable text of each book. Because it is UNCORRECTED material, please consider the following text as a useful but insufficient proxy for the authoritative book pages.

3   Highway construction and maintenance work is a uniquely hazardous work environment for Department of Transportation (DOT) employees. Other hazardous industries have successfully explored incentives and disincentives to motivate employees to perform their job duties safely. Implementing such safety incentive programs is challenging for DOTs on a wide range of issues, including but not limited to funding, equity, policy, and evaluation. This NCHRP synthesis project explored issues related to the practices around safety incentive and disincentive programs to motivate safe behaviors within DOTs across the United States. This chapter of the report provides an overview of the topic and synthesis study to inform of relevant issues with safety incentives while also highlighting the issues to be covered in this report. Background Working in highway construction and maintenance means that employees are exposed to regular occupational hazards like those faced in industrial and commercial construction industries, such as extreme weather conditions, and working at heights and near heavy equipment and electricity. They also face the additional hazard of working near the moving traffic of the public, sometimes in extremely close proximity to high-speed travelers. In those conditions, safety is paramount for these employees. Nationally, DOTs seem more focused on improving their employees’ safety through various initiatives. One such initiative is the use of incentives and disincentives to motivate workers to perform their job duties safely. Examples of such incentive programs include rewarding workers for reporting near misses or hazards and encouraging the use of safety committees. Conversely, disincentive strategies can be used to discourage unsafe behaviors, such as disciplinary actions for unsafe behaviors. Most safety incentive programs are either injury/illness/incident-based or behavior-based incentive programs. The former received some restrictions and clarification from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) stating that injury/illness/incident- based programs are allowable, assuming there are no ramifications for reporting incidents. DOT practices related to safety incentives and disincentives can be wide ranging in their assessment, types of incentives, and the formality of the program, among many other items. This variety presents an opportunity to understand the landscape of practices related to safety incentives and disincentives through a synthesis study. This study hopes to inform DOTs of safety incentive program design, effective practices, anticipated challenges, and written poli- cies and procedures to help improve the safety performance of their agencies and keep their people safe. C H A P T E R   1 Introduction

4 Practices to Motivate Safe Behaviors with Highway Construction and Maintenance Crews Synthesis Objective This synthesis seeks to gather state-of-practice information regarding the current processes and strategies for effectively using incentives and disincentives to motivate safe behaviors with highway construction and maintenance crews. The purpose of this synthesis is to document the state of the practice of DOTs regarding safety incentive and disincentive programs for DOT highway construction and maintenance crews, related motivational techniques, and written policies or training to implement these programs. To be specific, this synthesis collected the following information regarding the use of safety incentive/disincentive programs: • Types of formal safety incentive or disincentive programs (i.e., structured, written DOT policy); • Types of informal safety incentive or disincentive programs (i.e., non-policy, non-metric driven); • Other safety motivational approaches (e.g., awareness, reminders, safety stand-downs, safety training, safety accountability, leadership training); • Implementation strategies (e.g., formation of teams, communication plan, collective bargaining); • Program success and how success is measured (e.g., performance metrics, documented change in worker safety behavior); • Funding for incentive programs (e.g., sources, restrictions); • Manager and supervisor/foreman engagement (e.g., day-to-day participation and involve- ment, attending awards ceremonies, employee recognition); • Program training requirements (e.g., enforcement of safety practices, motivational skills for supervisors); • Written DOT program policies and procedures; and • Challenges for implementation (e.g., labor relations, funding). Study Approach An extensive literature review provides an initial understanding of the current state of research and practice regarding safety incentives and disincentives. The findings of the review can be seen in Chapter 2. The existing literature and previous discussions with DOTs assisted with the development of the survey questionnaire. A survey was created to capture the state of practice of safety incentives and disincentives within DOTs. Under the guidance of the topic panel, the survey was divided into the following categories: Demographic Information, Formal Incentive/Disincentive Programs, Written Policies and Procedures, Evaluation of the Program, and Implementation Strategies and Challenges. Acknowledging that not all DOTs will have experience with a formal incentive, question logic guided respondents accordingly, and those without a formal program were led to a series worded in such a way that the use of a formal program was not a prerequisite. This line of questioning, while worded differently, was similar to the questions provided to those with a formal program. Once the final draft of the survey was approved, an email request with the survey link was distributed to the membership of the AASHTO Committee on Maintenance and the North American Association of Transportation Safety and Health Officials (NAATSHO). The committee members were asked to distribute the survey to individuals responsible for occupational safety within their organizations. The complete survey is given in Appendix A, with aggregate results presented in Appendix B. The survey was sent to 50 state DOTs. A total of 40 responses were collected from the survey, representing 40 different DOTs and providing an 80% response rate. Figure 1.1 shows the map of states that responded to the survey. Following the analysis of survey responses, subsequent case examples were conducted to gather further information on the topic. Since incentive program use is inconsistent nationally,

Introduction 5   a strategy was needed to select the DOTs for the case examples. e questions and responses used as a strategy for case example selection were these: • Does your DOT have a formal incentive/disincentive program for safety-related behaviors? ∼ Response: Yes • Does your organization have a dened process for selecting safety incentives? ∼ Response: Yes Other factors in case selection included incentive/disincentive program documentation and agreeing to participate in the interview. Five states (California, Mississippi, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, and Texas) were chosen for the examples to get an in-depth understanding of the successes, challenges, and barriers to using formal safety incentive programs. One state, Tennessee, was chosen as an advanced state in terms of an occupational safety program but without a formal incentive program. is state desires a formal safety incentive program in the future and provides an opportunity to learn about challenges and to identify information needs from states with experience to help them overcome unknowns or uncertainties. e states were contacted for assistance with the study, and all agreed to participate in the interviews. Details of the individual case examples are outlined in Chapter 4. e questions asked during the conver- sations can be found in Appendix C. Policy manual language related to safety incentives and disincentives that survey respondents uploaded can be found in Appendix D. Figure 1.1. Map of states responding to survey, N 5 40.

Next: Chapter 2 - Literature Review »
Practices to Motivate Safe Behaviors with Highway Construction and Maintenance Crews Get This Book
×
 Practices to Motivate Safe Behaviors with Highway Construction and Maintenance Crews
MyNAP members save 10% online.
Login or Register to save!
Download Free PDF

In comparable private sectors, incentive and disincentive programs have effectively promoted safe behaviors by employees. However, state departments of transportation (DOTs) have unique limitations and restrictions on their ability to financially incentivize safe actions by highway construction and maintenance crews or, in some cases, implement corrective actions to disincentivize unsafe actions. While navigating these restrictions is difficult, some DOTs have implemented unique approaches in order to institute incentives, including monetary awards, certificates, personal protective equipment, meals, and more.

NCHRP Synthesis 608: Practices to Motivate Safe Behaviors with Highway Construction and Maintenance Crews, from TRB's National Cooperative Highway Research Program, documents state DOTs practices regarding safety incentive and disincentive programs for highway construction and maintenance crews.

READ FREE ONLINE

  1. ×

    Welcome to OpenBook!

    You're looking at OpenBook, NAP.edu's online reading room since 1999. Based on feedback from you, our users, we've made some improvements that make it easier than ever to read thousands of publications on our website.

    Do you want to take a quick tour of the OpenBook's features?

    No Thanks Take a Tour »
  2. ×

    Show this book's table of contents, where you can jump to any chapter by name.

    « Back Next »
  3. ×

    ...or use these buttons to go back to the previous chapter or skip to the next one.

    « Back Next »
  4. ×

    Jump up to the previous page or down to the next one. Also, you can type in a page number and press Enter to go directly to that page in the book.

    « Back Next »
  5. ×

    To search the entire text of this book, type in your search term here and press Enter.

    « Back Next »
  6. ×

    Share a link to this book page on your preferred social network or via email.

    « Back Next »
  7. ×

    View our suggested citation for this chapter.

    « Back Next »
  8. ×

    Ready to take your reading offline? Click here to buy this book in print or download it as a free PDF, if available.

    « Back Next »
Stay Connected!