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Mesa launches test site for work zone contractors

Posted: 7:33 AM, Apr 11, 2019
Updated: 2019-04-11 10:33:01-04

MESA — Development in the Valley can often mean street closures and lane restrictions. To make sure work zones are set up correctly, Mesa is launching the first test site of its kind in the Phoenix area for contractors to train how to correctly and safely set up signs and barricades.

“We want to make sure the public is safe, not only for the folks that have to drive through the work zones but also for the folks that are working in those,” Mesa traffic control supervisor Craig Brisbois told ABC15.

The “proving ground” along Thomas Road, between Recker and Higley roads, allows contractors to train alongside actual drivers.

Brisbois said the site is ideal because it’s not actively traveled but allows contractors to train and test setting up a variety of lane restrictions. Mesa — and other Valley cities — have specific rules and guidelines when it comes to spacing out signs and barricades and allowing drivers enough space to merge into alternate lanes.

“The manual’s one thing, reading it, versus actually performing — it’s different,” said Jesus Nunez, Vice President of Operations for Trafficade, one of the city’s contractors.

“We can take our time [training] and go back and explain the spacing or go back and explain any questions the trainee might have,” he said.

The site also allows companies to test out new technology.

Trafficade is testing a system that connects with services like Waze and Google Maps and notifies drivers through their phone of lane restrictions.