Road surfacing workers often work on short to medium term worksites where only temporary barriers are used. Construction work zones are hazardous both for motorists who drive through the complex array of signs, cones, delineators and lane changes; and for workers who build, repair, and maintain our vast network of streets, bridges, and highways.

Worldwide there is a general consensus and recognition of the higher risk exposure associated with road side working as opposed to other occupations

The Southern African Bitumen Association (SABITA) has for some time been concerned about exposure of member’s workers to the high risk environment associated with road construction activities.  In collaboration with the U.S. based National Asphalt Pavement Association (NAPA) SABITA has developed a Road Work Zone Safety awareness training program based on the U.S. program ROADWAY SAFETY+ Version 11.0.

Why do we need a Work Zone Safety Programme?

Building new or maintaining existing highways and roads can be very dangerous but our work does not have to be, if we;

  • Are aware of the hazards
  • Know how to identify and avoid hazards in the workplace
  • Discussing safety concerns with our supervisors and fellow workers
  • Stay alert at all times

These are some of the topics dealt with in this Work Zone Safety programme launched by Sabita in 2015.

Objectives of Work Zone Safety program

The program is aimed at creating AWARENESS and it provides an overview of common hazards in construction Health and Safety and recommends simple prevention measures. The program can be used for training interventions such as worker induction and Tool-Box-Talks as well as providing Health and Safety specifications for Road Construction Tenders and Contracts.

Users of the program are therefore likely to be Clients (National, Provincial and Municipal Road Authorities), Agents, Contractors and Road Construction Site Supervisors.

Program content and availability

The training package consists of a software application with +23 individual modules covering a wide range of relevant road work safety topics.  Modules include-Runovers and Backovers;  Operator Safety;  Struck or Crushed;  Flag person Safety;  Temporary Traffic Control Devices (TTCD) Setup & Retrieval;  Night work;  Excavation; Electrical Hazards; Sprains & Strains;  Speed Management; etc.  An instructor Guide Book is available to each trainer who signs up for the training and a registered database of all who have undergone the training will be kept by Sabita.

For further details contact Lorraine Wagner at the SABITA offices on 021 531 2718 or E-mail:  or check on