Responder Testimonial Video Use During Crash Responder Safety Week (CRSW) - Webinar #5 Summary

FHWA

This webinar spotlighted two State Departments of Transportation (DOT) that have developed responder testimonial videos to promote CRSW.

Keynote speaker, Adam Hammons (Media Relations Specialist with the Texas Department of Transportation) provided the following strategies and coordination that the State of Texas uses for CRSW:

  • Having a champion for the effort was key – Mr. Hammons noted that David McDonald, Texas Department of Transportation Statewide TIM Program Manager, spearheaded the effort. Frequent meetings between Mr. McDonald and communications and media specialist team were important for the planning and execution of the testimonial videos.
  • One of the crucial aspects of this effort was Mr. McDonald’s long list of law enforcement contacts. Mr. McDonald was able to identify responder crashes for the testimonial videos, reach out to responders, and schedule testimonial interviews.
  • The team selected crashes of various severities (fatal, injuries) and near-miss scenarios to demonstrate the often work-ending, life altering nature of injury crashes. Near-miss stories also help raise public awareness.
  • Mr. Hammons noted the importance of keeping the interviews informal and making sure to capture the responders’ emotions so that the videos are more impactful.
  • One of the videos produced by North Texas Toll Authority and edited by Mr. Hammons, upon being posted on social media, received 1500 comments and 890 thousand views.

Keynote speaker, Michael Jungbluth (program manager for Wisconsin Department of Transportation, Emergency Transportation Operations program) shared the following plans and strategies for the State of Wisconsin for CRSW:

  • The initiative is a result of a team effort, comprised by the Office of Public Affairs, Region Communication Managers (2 for each region), Bureau of Traffic Operations PIO (David Hunt), Emergency Transportation Operations/Traffic Incident Management Enhancement (ETO/TIME) team, and first responder agency contacts/relationships.
  • Mr. Jungbluth’s experience in Traffic Incident Management proved invaluable due to his extensive list of contacts in law enforcement, firefighting, and towing.
  • Mr. Jungbluth noted the importance of:
    • Tracking responder struck-by crashes and near misses throughout the year, instead of waiting until the end of the year to compile a list of incidents.
    • Understanding that some responders may not be ready to share their traumatic experiences with the public, especially if the crash or near miss was not too long ago.

During the second half of the All-State Webinar, TIM communities from the following States and national associations share preliminary plans to commemorate CRSW:

Alabama

Colorado

Florida

Virginia

Arizona

Connecticut

Michigan

Texas


Operations Area of Practice

  • Roadway Safety Services / Roadway Safety Patrol
  • Traffic Incident Management

Organizational Capability Element

  • Traffic Incident Management

Event Type

  • Webinar

Content Type

  • Presentation

Publishing Organization

  • NOCoE
Issue Date
October 13th, 2021
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