Local Information

Secretary of Transportation Lynn Peterson statement regarding recent construction incidents

Wednesday, March 18, 2015 - 15:43

Lars Erickson, WSDOT communications 360-789-6463 (mobile)

At the Washington State Department of Transportation, we have a strong safety culture. Anytime there is an incident, we examine our safety practices and the actions we take on a daily basis. In light of recent events, I am directing the following actions:

  • All project offices statewide will participate in safety stand-downs during the next 30 days to review safety protocols and expectations, as well as the agency’s safety strategy, “Journey to Injury Free.” (A safety stand-down typically occurs after an incident. Operations stop on a project for personnel on every shift to review safety protocols and procedures.)
  • WSDOT engineers will perform walk-throughs on all static jobsites, providing an additional review of the contractor’s safety documentation to ensure it is meeting contract requirements.
  • Project staff will review weekly safety meetings between WSDOT and contractors to affirm they are conducting thorough discussions of safety and hazard analysis on jobsites. 
  • John Milton, currently WSDOT’s Director of Enterprise Risk Management, has been appointed as the new Director of Quality Assurance and Transportation System Safety. His first priorities are to ensure all contract safety protocols are being followed, and to identify any opportunities for improvement.

While we have lowered our number of recordable injuries as an agency during the past two years, we can do better. It remains our priority to make significant progress in reducing recordable injuries through our daily attention to safety in all actions we take.

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