You are on page 1of 10

Highways Agency Traffic Officers

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Highways Agency Traffic Officers


20 June 2003


Public body

Legal status

Executive agency


Patrol England's motorways and some trunk roads



Parent organization Highways Agency




The Highways Agency Traffic Officer Service (TOS) is an operational unit within the Highways Agency in England. In April 2004, Highways Agency Traffic Officers (HATOs) began working alongside police on motorways in the West Midlands.[1] The roll out of traffic officers was completed on 18 July 2006 and they now cover all of the motorway network within England, i.e. that which is owned or managed by the Highways Agency[clarification needed], and some of the All-Purpose Trunk Road (APTR) network. They work alongside the policein England to reduce congestion caused by incidents. Overall it was estimated to cost the UK economy £3 billion a year with the closure of one lane estimated at up to £400,000 an hour. The introduction of the officers was aimed to reduce the 25% of delays caused by collisions by around 5%.[1] A similar service exists in Wales, staffed by Welsh Government Traffic Officers.

may be single crewed .4 Incident Support Units 1. or their deputies. All officers carry a portable Airwave radio.5 Incidents  2 Powers o o 2.1 Management 3. each patrol has a crew of two.1 Patrols 1.2 Removal and disposal of vehicles  3 Regional Control Centres (RCC) o o 3.2 Vehicles & Equipment 1.Contents [hide]  1 Operations o o o o o 1. During the summer months staff are able to wear an open necked white shirt as opposed to the normal collared shirt and tie. distinctive by the orange and yellow markings. Only team managers.1 Traffic Management Act 2004 2. All crew members wear high-visibility jackets. along with dark blue cargo-style trousers. gloves and safety goggles.but this severely limits their capabilities.2 Control Room     4 Locations 5 Ranks and Grades 6 References 7 External links [edit]Operations [edit]Patrols Normally. All staff who work on the network are required to wear steel toe cap boots and have access to other protective equipment such as high visibility waterproof trousers. [edit]Vehicles & Equipment .3 Communications 1.

and rear-facing amber lighting. have the benefit of red and amber LED lightbars and additional LED lights. Whilst stationary on the hard shoulder and if a Traffic Officer feels it is necessary .due to the weather or location .they may activate the red rear lights. All of the vehicles are liveried with yellow and black Battenburg markings. vehicles will use front. 4x4 vehicles can remain mobile in flood or snow conditions. unlike Police. However. as well as being able to carry the large amount of safety and recovery equipment (including a basic first aid kit) that the patrols use. equipped with a Sepura vehicle mounted TETRA digital radio. These procedures differ from Police procedures.A typical Highways Agency Traffic Officer vehicle Traffic Officers patrol the motorway network using high-visibility 4x4 patrol vehicles. in addition to the amber lights. When stationary on hard shoulder. Such vehicles also have the advantage of visibility – their size makes them more visible to other motorists when stationary on the hard shoulder. . This will be noted in the Traffic Officer's pocket notebook as a dynamic risk assessment and also relayed to the RCC for entry on to the log. hands-free mobile telephone. to identify a stationary vehicle. Traffic Officers. when the vehicle is working in the carriageway all the rear-facing lights (amber and red) are displayed to act as a warning to approaching traffic. where by the police will employ rear-facing `reds' only when stationary on the hard shoulder. Such vehicles are used mainly for their ability to tow. must comply with all speed limits (including temporary mandatory limits in roadworks) currently in force. A typical Highways Agency Traffic Officer vehicle When travelling on the hard shoulder. and are restricted to 20 mph (HATO procedures). vehicles will illuminate rear-facing amber LEDs. or clear broken-down or disabled vehicles to a place of safety off the carriageway if needed.

[edit]Communications Traffic Officers maintain contact with each other and the Regional Control Centre (RCC) by using Sepura handheld and vehicle TETRARadios. This continued for some time and faced with the option of withdrawing from service. basic first-aid kits. they can carry more equipment (in quantity terms). the HA eventually addressed this situation. the Mitsubishi Shogun was operating above the vehicle maximum plated axle weight. The Pathfinder was discontinued in service once the vehicles had reached the end of their lease for operational reason as the vehicle was considered unsuitable.g. The traffic officers use different models of 4x4 vehicles. Fitting is done by various conversion companies around the UK. using Whelen LED light bars and auxiliary LED lights. Previous vehicles used included Mitsubishi Grandis (for Team Managers) Mitsubishi Shogun (CK Model).Each vehicles carries 650 kg (1.[citation needed] Previously HATO vehicles were leased on and 18 month / 150. This was due to the vehicle stance. When first introduced into service. when carrying the HA equipment. in Coventry. Nissan Pathfinder and Range Rover. Incident Support Units (ISU) are part of the Managing Agent contracts. [edit]Incident Support Units Although liveried similar to the patrol vehicles. They work closely with the Traffic Officers in dealing with incidents on the network.000 mile contract through Lloyds leasing (which became Lex Leasing in 2009). utilising the Airwave network. a wider range of kit and deal with certain infrastructure elements that Traffic Officers are not able to work on. For example. warning lights. Vehicles current used for patrolling are: Land Rover Discovery 3. Toyota Land Cruiser and Mitsubishi Shogun BK.400 lb) of equipment which includes traffic cones. squat low at the rear. road-clearance equipment and towing/recovery gear – all contained in a heavy steel bolted-in rack system. A new contract was awarded on 8th Feb 2010 to VT (now Babcock) Group for the provision and maintenance of the 207 strong fleet. water containers. by uprating the rear springs and therefore allowing the vehicles to be operated with the manufacturer's specification again.[2] The lighting equipment is supplied and maintained by Woodway Engineering Ltd. all diesel powered with automatic transmissions. with the assistance of Mitsubishi. enabling officers to co-ordinate with other Airwave users (e. [edit]Incidents . This upset the vehicle handling and obstructed the rear vision. They also have variable message signs (VMS) at the rear. local Road Traffic Policing officers) Each HATO patrol vehicle is also fitted with a handsfree mobile phone.

a traffic officer may:[6] . every hour of every day and attended over 281. vulnerable persons.  preventing damage to. the police take control of the incident and will generally be assisted by HATOs. such a road. [edit]Traffic Management Act 2004 Officers must follow the directions of a police constable. spillages.[5] For the purposes of:[5]  maintaining or improving the movement of traffic on a relevant road over which the traffic officer has jurisdiction  preventing or reducing the effect of anything causing (or which has the potential to cause) congestion or other disruption to the movement of traffic on such a road. or to anything on or near. Other incidents Traffic Officers attend include. HATOs patrolled 2.025 miles (3. controlled by a duty operations manager. At serious RTCs. pedestrians. Debris in the carriageway.  avoiding danger to persons or other traffic using such a road (or preventing risks of any such danger arising). A "silver" command will be established at the RCC to manage the incident from the Highways Agency's perspective. driving/reversing on the hard shoulder).Between 1 December 2007 and 30 November 2008. fires (to support the fire service).[3] HATOs attend incidents ranging from breakdowns and road debris to minor Road Traffic Collisions (RTC) releasing the police motorway patrols to concentrate on criminality activities on the motorway network and serious Road Traffic Collisions (RTC's). broken down vehicles (and those broken down in the carriageway) and network defects. animals.[4] and to exercise their powers. Traffic Officers derive powers from the Traffic Management Act 2004 and The Removal and Disposal of Vehicles (Traffic Officers) (England) Regulations 2008. must be on duty and in uniform. making use of the Regional Control Centre (RCC) for setting of electronic traffic signs.000 incidents.259 km) of (Highways Agency owned) motorways and selected trunk roads across England. an average of one incident every two minutes. [edit]Powers In addition to a number of exemptions from the Road Traffic Act and Motorway Regulations (such as stopping on the hard shoulder.

Traffic Officers now have the powers to directly arrange recovery of abandoned.   to direct persons on foot (or such persons and other traffic) to stop. usually from behind directing you to pull over to the side by pointing and/or using the left indicator You MUST then pull over and stop as soon as it is safe to do so. or keep to. direct a person driving or propelling a vehicle to stop the vehicle. in accordance with the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) transfer of responsibilities. . HATO traffic officers are not exempt from any traffic laws and MUST at all times comply with the posted speed limits and red traffic lights. on a road to stop the vehicle or cycle. attract your attention by   flashing amber lights.[7] Assaulting. issue fixed penalties or report for summons for any motoring offence. the Highways Agency gained the relevant powers in 2008. in England only. where possible. 52)). to search.  to place temporary traffic signs and cones on a road. The use of recovery powers will be in accordance with strict guidance and instructions. broken down or damaged vehicles. Then switch off your engine. a particular line of traffic. Previously this facility was arranged through the respective local Police forces but.g. or to make it proceed in.[8] HA traffic officers do not have any powers of detention. or for an officer to claim they enjoy more powers than they do. It is an offence not to comply with their directions. [8] It is also an offence to impersonate an officer. —Rule 108. If HA traffic officers in uniform want to stop your vehicle on safety grounds (e. to direct a person driving a mechanically propelled vehicle. Drivers are obliged by the Traffic Management Act 2004 to comply with the directions given by officers. an insecure load) they will.[9] This is briefly explained in theHighway Code: Highways Agency Traffic Officers have powers to stop vehicles on most motorways and some 'A' class roads. Highway Code [edit]Removal and disposal of vehicles Starting in 2009.  for the purposes of a traffic survey of any description which is being carried out on or in the vicinity of a road. or riding a cycle. or to proceed to a particular point on or near the road on which the vehicle is being driven or propelled (subject to the restriction in section 35(3) of the Road Traffic Act 1988 (c. resisting or willfully obstructing an officer are offences. or to make it proceed in. to direct a person driving or propelling a vehicle to stop the vehicle. or keep to. a particular line of traffic.

can also be statutorily removed under Section 99.[11] [edit]Regional Control Centres (RCC) There are seven Regional Control Centres located across England.[12] [edit]Locations Region Regional Control Centre Outstations West Midlands Quinton Hilton Park Longbridge (M40. There are strict controls about the use of statutory removals. [edit]Control Room The control centres answer the orange emergency roadside telephones on the motorway and trunk road network. control the electronic variable-message signs on the roads and supply information to the NTCC. The NVRM will act as the Highways Agency's liaison with the recovery operators. allocate Traffic Officers to incidents. as well as the daily operations control rooms. FMG Support were appointed as the Highways Agency's National Vehicle Recovery Manager (NVRM). [edit]Management Each Region is headed up by a Regional Operations Manager (ROM) and a number of Operations Managers (OM). if this time lapses a "statutory removal" can be invoked. Under Section 99 of the Road Traffic Act 1984. The NVRM will undertake the arrangement of any recovery. monitors the CCTV system. regardless of how long the vehicle has been in situ. Each OM has an area of responsibility which may be certain areas of the network and outstations.In October 2008. who will be appointed to recovery vehicles as instructed. Jct 15) Ansty .[12] Some RCCs are jointly staffed by the police. Motorists have two hours to make suitable arrangements. The NVRM is appointed to arrange recovery of the motorists vehicle. Traffic Officers will be able to offer motorists a "facilitated recovery". Vehicles that are in a dangerous location or causing an obstruction . These RCC's form the central management and business support units for the specific Region concerned. through to planning and control rooms. liaise with breakdown organisations. The powers to allow Traffic Officers to remove vehicles are detailed in "The Removal and Disposal of Vehicles (Traffic Officers) (England) Regulations 2008"[10] In circumstances where motorists cannot make suitable private arrangements.

Wakefield Calder Park Carville Barton Hartshead Moor Sprotbrough . Buckfastleigh) South East Godstone Easton Lane (M3 Jct 9) Weatherhill (M23 Jct 8-9) Coldharbour Dartford (and East Region) Heston (and East Region) East South Mimms Whittlesford Toddington Milton Common Chieveley Dartford Heston South Mimms Felley East Midlands Nottingham Business Park.Region Regional Control Centre Outstations Strensham (M5 Jct 7-8) South West Avonmouth Almondsbury (M5 Jct 16) Chelston (M5 Jct 26) Stanton St Quinton (M4 Jct 17) Pridhamsleigh (A38. Newton-le-Willows Rob Lane (M6 J22 to J23) Lowhurst Millness Samlesbury Milnrow Knutsford North East Calder Park. Nottingham Shepshed Watford Gap North West Rob Lane.

The new design removed the dual colour/rank system replacing it with a simple and easy to understand design. . Each member of staff of the Highways Agency Traffic Officer Service bears his or her own individual "HA" shoulder number. From August 2009 the colour and rank system changed following feedback from staff.[edit]Ranks and Grades Highways Agency epaulettes Title Traffic Officer (Control Centre Operator) Traffic Officer (On-Road) Team Manager Operations Manager Regional Operations Manager Grade TM1a TM1b TM2 TM3 TM4 From Aug 2009 Pre Aug 2009 The numbers shown are for purposes of illustration only.

most notably in the US the Urban Mobility Study. The Eddington Tranpsort Study provides a look at road congestion and its effects in the UK. Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) have been an effective method to implement some of the proposals put forth to handle traffic management challenges. all of which are measures aimed at making more efficient use of existing roads by controlling the volume and speed of traffic. albarandok@yahoo. are increasingly involving private enterprise in the solution. How PwC can help you Traffic management solutions. One solution to the road congestion problem in urban areas is the imposition of Road User Charges (RUCs). Several metropolitan areas in Europe have begin to impose RUCs. financial kennethjam18@yahoo. Our reputation as the best PPP adviser in the world is confirmed in the advisor ranking tables ofProject Finance . We offer a comprehensive service: advising on procurement. as the sphere of influence for traffic management encompasses both public road infrastructure and private vehicle ownership and control. tax. and cooperative ventures. Several studies have been conducted on the effects of increased road traffic. to list just a few examples. designing performance payment regimes. especially as fuel costs continue to rise. For one. and angry motorists. There are several implications from the trend of more and more vehicles traveling the roadways. technology. PPPs lend themselves very nicely to supporting traffic management development initiatives. there is a corresponding rise in greenhouse gas emissions. including road safety and public transport penetration. Such measures tackle a number of problems. and this concept is expected to gain ground in the larger metropolitan areas of the United States. including CO2 which has been attributed to global ambient air temperature increases. and one of the means to address the problem is through various traffic management schemes. wasted time. which translates into wasted fuel. while imposed by governmental albarandojames@yahoo. Government policies are being drafted and implemented to address this issue. accounting and human resource issues. conducted annually by the Texas Transportation Institute of Texas A&M University.Traffic management The concept of traffic management as applied to the ground transportation industry encompasses a variety of processes. A second result of increased road traffic is simply more congestion.