Being a traffic controller is a noble profession. You are responsible for the safe, orderly, and expeditious flow of traffic in the traffic control system. To become one, you have to undergo a process and be able to complete courses to be certified and licensed to do the job.
A traffic controller is essential when vehicles have to be manually directed due to the absence of traffic lights. He or she directs the flow and speed of cars and other vehicles to ensure that pedestrians, motorists, and construction site workers are safe and secured.
Duties and Responsibilities
These are some of the usual duties and tasks of a traffic controller:
- directs traffic near areas like construction sites, roadwork, planned maintenance sites, and accidents and communicates via two-way radios with fellow road traffic controllers, construction workers, and emergency response teams to stay updated on traffic conditions
- manages, synchronizes, sets up and removes traffic control
- directs pedestrians to ensure safety especially during changed road conditions and explains and answers driver and pedestrian inquiries
- sets up and takes down temporary road signage
- operates road signals like the Stop and Slow Down signs and uses hand signals to manage traffic and pedestrian flow
- receives directions from supervisors, traffic authority personnel, construction managers, paramedics, police officers, firefighters, and government officials
Sectors That Need Traffic Controllers
A traffic controller is very much in demand in the infrastructure and construction business sector, those in the heavy industries as well as in the commercial, maintenance, and capital work sectors. Each day has its challenges, some days are worse than others, but it is also a great job for part-time hours and can be very rewarding.
Requirements to Become a Traffic Controller
Here’s a checklist that should be complied if you’re bent on becoming a traffic controller.
- You should be at least 18 years of age and have a valid driver’s license.
- Obtain a white card.
This card is a prerequisite before taking the training courses. You must have this card if you want to qualify for construction site traffic control jobs.
- Complete traffic control training courses.
You need to take training courses to qualify as a traffic controller. These courses provide theory and practical training. If you’re passionate about becoming a traffic controller, conforming to a traffic control course in Sydney is essential. You’ll be trained on how to assess and respond to conditions, how to control traffic using stop/slow bats, how to plan and prepare traffic procedures, how to operate communication devices, and how to clean a road work site.
- You must be able to speak and read English and understand the mandatory and standard road symbol signs.
- You should be physically and mentally fit for the job.
You must be fit to do the work especially since you’ll be lifting heavy objects when preparing roadblocks if assigned in construction sites.
Mandatory Items and Equipment of a Traffic Controller
The mandatory items of traffic controllers include a stop and slow bat, chevrons or signs with black arrows, witches hats or cones to ensure visibility when vehicles approach obstructions or barriers, and danger tape which is a visual tape to block off unsafe areas. If you’ll be working in on-going construction sites these personal protective equipment are mandatory: a hard hat tops with trousers along with reflector bands and fluorescent stripes, earplugs, protective eyewear, and sunscreen.
While the process of becoming a traffic controller may take a while, it shouldn’t prevent you from pursuing this profession. It allows you to have a decent income and also a great way to serve your community by ensuring everyone’s safety while they’re on the road.