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Questions on Training

Questions on Training with FHWA’s Paul JodinField Operations Guide

Another resource for Safety Service Patrol operators and supervisors who are training for the job, new to the job or who are veterans looking for a refresh on policies and traffic incident management standards, is the Federal Highway Administration’s (FHWA) Field Operations Guide (FOG) for Safety/Service Patrols. The Guide was created by the FHWA as a quick reference that the FHWA recommends Safety Service Patrol operators keep in their patrol vehicle for easy access while performing patrol tasks. It covers pre-trip inspections, personal safety measures, traffic laws, transportation of stranded motorists, priorities at an incident scene and more.

Paul Jodoin, FHWA Traffic Incident Management Program Manager, took a moment to tell Safe Highway Matters a bit more about the Field Operations Guide:

1. How has the FHWA distributed this Guide to administering agencies of Safety Service Patrols? Via email or shipped to the agencies?

Hard copies of the Field Operator Guide (FOG) have been shipped by mail as requested.

2. What was the impetus for FHWA to produce a training guide for Safety Service Patrols?

The FOG can be used as a framework and tool for training new personnel, however, it is not the primary purpose. FOG’s and associated checklists are used by various emergency responder disciplines to assist field staff during emergency and various other situations. The SSP FOG is intended and made to stay with the operator in the SSP vehicle so that it can be referenced as a reminder during the various scenarios while performing highway duties. Such guides are often helpful during situations when it may be difficult to remain fully focused. We see the FOG as being particularly beneficial for newer operators.

3. The introduction to this Guide makes a distinction between Safety Service Patrols (S/SP) and Full Function Safety Service Patrols (FFS/SP), what is this distinction and why is it necessary?

We wanted to take the opportunity, as we often do, to emphasize and encourage the expanded use of SSP’s for Traffic Incident Management roles.
FHWA Training

4. What information does this guide provide that may not have otherwise been made available to Safety Service Patrol Drivers?

The information contained in the guide is not new and is readily available elsewhere from various sources. The SSP relevant information is gathered in one concise document that is easily used while on duty.

5. How can agencies best utilize this guide?

Agencies may review the various topics as a framework for training and issue the guide to operators to enhance current training and operational activities.

6. How often will it be updated and how might SSP programs provide feedback?

No plans to update at this time.

SSP Programs may contact Paul Jodoin, FHWA TIM Program Manager at for copies of the Safety Service Patrol FOG, while supplies remain available. It is also available online at

Back to Safe Highway Matters: Spring 2011

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