Emergency Transportation Operations

TIM Public Outreach Toolkit Launch – June 19, 2012 Webinar Transcript

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Adam
Good afternoon. We will take questions throughout the call. You may type your question in the chat box. You may begin your conference.

April Armstrong
Thank you. I want to welcome everyone to the webinar. This webinar is the TIM Public Outreach Toolkit Launch webinar. It is sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration. We have developed a traffic information toolkit to help raise awareness across the country to motorists about the issue of Traffic Incident Management, specifically the role of all of us as motorists to keep the roadways safe and moving freely. I am going to turn the floor over to Laurie Radow from the Emergency Transportation Operations Office. She will walk us through the toolkit and will be leading the webinar. I want to mention that the webinar will be available to everyone. The archive and transcript will be made available in the toolkit, which will be formally launched and online within the next week. Everyone on the call will receive an e-mail with the URL when it goes live next week.

I would like to introduce Laurie Radow from the Federal Highway Administration.

Laurie Radow
Thank you. Good morning. Welcome to the webinar sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration. I am Laurie Radow with the Federal Highway Administration Office of Operations. We are delighted to have so many who joined today. We will discuss the Federal Highway Administration Traffic Management TIM Public Outreach Toolkit.

We have tried to make this different than the typical webinar with the PowerPoint presentations. You will see one PowerPoint presentation to introduce you to the toolkit. The rest will be a dynamic session with four panelists who will take your questions. We want to make this interactive.

We want to thank the people who have joined for taking the poll. We learned that there are a number of you that are unfamiliar with the laws. We are thrilled that you are going to participate in this area. We welcome comments from the chat room whether you are familiar with TIM or if it is brand-new to you. Let me start by introducing my panelists. They have a keen interest in public safety, and they want to make sure everyone is informed. I am joined by Dana Nolfe, Justin McNaull, Grady Carrick, and Brian Ursino.

Dana is the chief of public affairs for the Rhode Island Department of Transportation. She oversees the aspects of the relations activities including special events, media relations, campaigns, news releases social media, and speechwriting. In 2010 and 2007, she was named the Public Relations Representative of the Year. She has been the Vice Chair of the Transportation Communications. The subcommittee promotes excellence in communications through the exchange of ideas and educational programming in annual sales. It also advises other committees on communication issues and sponsors the yearly National Transportation Public Affairs.

Justin is the Director of State Relations in the American Automobile Association National Office. The company is a local government agency which focuses on traffic safety advocacy and business lobbying.

Grady has been a public safety officer for more than 30 years. He is currently the northern region Commander of the Florida Highway Patrol for the area that covers Florida from Pensacola to Jacksonville.

Brian is with the American Association of Motor Vehicles. He has served as Director of Law Enforcement. He retired from the Washington State Patrol in 2010 after more than 30 years of service. The last five years he has spent as an assistant chief.

The purpose of today's webinar is to introduce you to the Traffic Incident Management Public Outreach Toolkit. It is designed to help people in national, state, and local government transportation public safety organizations. It helps concerned citizens or community-based organizations raise awareness among general public audiences about two important traffic laws known as Move it and Slow down, Move Over. Let's now start the presentation.

When we speak to men and women in Traffic Incident Management, we learn one group at the scene can be critical to saving lives of motorists. That group is us, the motorists. We feel the better motorists understand the risks associated with traffic incidents, the more likely they will be able to be part of the solution. Their behavior can make the difference between life and death. Specifically, motorists need to know to slow down and move over to an adjacent lane when they see flashing lights and move their vehicle out of travel lanes if involved in any kind of incident.

This slide is the agenda. It is a rough overview of the webinar. We will take questions and comments throughout the webinar. Please start sending your questions. We will adjourn on time at 2:30 and begin the optional media 101 webinar provided for people are interested in raising awareness about these laws. This training will provide an introductory overview to putting the toolkit to use with your local media partners.

We will start with this quiz. Do you know? Let's start. Do you know the number of law enforcement officers being struck by a vehicle since 2000? It is more than 160. Let's look at the financial costs. Any guesses on the percent jump in cost associated with traffic incidents in the last four years? It's 85%. That is from an AAA report. We will make these citations available so that you can find information regarding these and other questions. These facts are a good way to help get your audience thinking about all the various aspects when a traffic incident occurs. This translates to 1620 respondents working in or near moving traffic or nearly 39,000 responders in harm's way in a 24-hour period based on a typical response. A typical response unit includes a total of nine responders.

This in many ways is the basis of why this campaign is underway. What is a traffic incident? Can anyone tell me? If you can, type your comments into the chat room. Traffic incidents are anything that has happened on or near a roadway affecting traffic, including a serious crash or overturned trucks for a tire change.

Why should we care? What do you think are the traffic implications on our lives in terms of the roadway? Someone has written that it causes delays and affects everyone on the road. That is very true. They create unsafe situations for others on the road and put responders at risk. You can imagine it as a traffic lane. Every minute that the freeway lane is blocked creates 4 extra minutes of delay. This is conservative. Some regions estimate six minutes of delay. This matters because incident related traffic delays cause additional safety hazards. Traffic jams make it difficult for responders to provide help that people need when in a crash. Time matters. Traffic jams are not only frustrating, they can be dangerous. They compromise our safety and cost valuable time and money every day. We have to work on the clearance of interference from the roadways.

Raise your hand if you have never been in a traffic incident. My guess would be none of you. What kinds of people respond? Who is involved? These are the questions appropriate when face-to-face when you are giving this presentation. But this is to get a sense of what you would be laying out when giving this presentation.

These are the responders. Traffic incident management responders work together as a team to clear incidents safely and quickly. Towing professionals are key members in helping to move cars and trucks out of roadways. With the Traffic Incident Management, firefighters, law enforcement, safety patrols, transportation and maintenance crews all work together. They use well-rehearsed procedures to respond quickly and safely. This figure shows the array of responders who work together. These are not all responders, but they are the primary responders.

I should say one of the reasons they are starting to work so well together is because Federal Highway, police, fire and State DOTs have worked together in the past 8-10 years to develop good traffic and management programs around the country. This is one component of the effort we have been doing.

Beginning with the fire responders. They save lives every day and work together to make sure the right people show up at the scene but they cannot do it alone. They need our help. We want everyone to know what you should do in all states. Move your car to a safe place and out of the lane. By moving out of the lane, we are helping to keep ourselves and others safe. We are helping to keep traffic moving and reduce emissions. By slowing down and moving over when we see flashing lights, we are helping to protect lives of responders and people in the traffic incident. This way, responders and other motorists are safe. They're able to provide the help faster and open the roadways more quickly.

This is the meat of the toolkit. These are the products that will be posted on the website in the next few days including a poster, two-sided oversized postcard, a brochure, and sample material to adjust to meet the needs of the outreach you are doing.

This is a good time for questions. To ask a question on the phone, press star, one.

The back side of the brochure allows you to put specific information to your locality. We have information about which states have the various laws and we can post that on the website. You can take that and add it to the back of the brochure. There will be a sample fact sheet and/or press release that you can add into the materials when wanting to highlight a specific incident. There is a wealth of information. We have taken key statistics and put them on these brochures. Then you can add additional materials. You can add the statistics we used on the number of hours for fuel wasted as well. There are statistics available for you to use.

April Armstrong
We have a couple of questions.

One from David Graham. Is this program to be delivered in person to an audience or is it intended for someone to work with our public information officers to develop a statewide awareness of incident management about the importance of TIM?

Laurie Radow
Both. You can take the material through the public outreach that you have made for other efforts. You can make it work with your public, state or local DOT officers if you feel that the local authorities aren't aware of the laws even though they have seen the signs on the road. We have made it, we think, as adjustable as it fits your needs.

April Armstrong
One more thing to add. I know that the Federal Highway Administration specifically added on the back of all of the visual products. At the very bottom they added a buckle up closure line. Each of these products contains a customizable PDF template where a local agency can add in additional information. They can even add additional statistics for pieces of information like quotes and testimonials relevant to that region. The buckle up information was added when FHWA heard from their public safety partners that law enforcement agencies and officers would be much more likely to be able to distribute these in partnership with the Department of Transportation at state or local levels if the product carried that "buckle-up" language.

In response to the question, the idea is that the products could be used by anyone as small as a community activist to raise awareness or up through any formal agency to execute the campaign or bundle it with a related campaign.

Laurie Radow
Yes. It is the cross fertilization to get people to buckle up and understand the laws. We hope that gets the point across in two very key issues. There are many good things that people may not be doing that they need to pay attention to. We hope it will be used for that range of the small grassroots organizations to the formalized State DOTs.

April Armstrong
Also a question from Nelson. Is the material available in Spanish or Chinese? I think he is talking about other non-English speaking audiences.

Laurie Radow
Good question. We did not do that. This is our first phase. Thank you for pointing that out. These are the things that help us. We will figure out how to do that in the future. I don't know if those documents have ever been produced in other languages.

Any other questions?

April Armstrong
One other point to make is that there are a number of localities around the country who at one time or another have launched their own Move it and Slow Down, Move Over type-laws. For localities like that, they have run those kinds of campaigns. They have other outreach materials. Something like this may provide national level packaging around the campaign and some additional muscle around the messages. There are a lot of localities that agencies may not have the budget to run those campaigns. They have these laws on the books. They wish for motorists to be more aware. For those states or regions, hopefully these products give that transportation agency or public safety agency a running start. It gives them something they can put to use immediately exactly as it is. Or they have the option to customize if they would like.

I see another question. I want to invite people to add any other questions or call on the phone and press star, one. Before we check for questions, we have a question from Tom. Tom is asking will the website have links to these other outreach materials. The answer is yes, it will.

Laurie Radow
This is a virtual toolkit. Everything you see will be posted on the website within the next few days. We will send a note to everyone by the end of the week or the beginning of next week with a summary of this and the link. It is there for you to download. We worked very hard to ensure that the products are designed in a way to make it easy to print on standard size paper. We are cognizant of budgets.

April Armstrong
Yes. Another thing about the toolkit, it will be an online toolkit and available with a visual icon as well as a brief description in lay-person language of how the product can be used alone or in combination with other toolkit items to give a sense of how they can envision using these in concert in various aspects of a campaign. We will return to the questions. I want to give a chance for anyone on the telephone. Do we have anyone?

Adam
There are no questions at this time.

April Armstrong
Thank you. We will go back to Eileen Singleton's question. Will the Federal Highway Administration be doing a national media campaign that states/regions can springboard off of? Like what happens when TTI issues its annual congestion report? Will there be a national outreach campaign around these products? Do you know, Laurie Radow?

Laurie Radow
We might consider that in the future. We want to roll these out to get a sense of if this is what people can use. Once we have a better feel of how they fit in with State and Local DOT's, we will get a better sense.

April Armstrong
Have you done any research on the best way to relay these messages?

Laurie Radow
We started small. We wanted to get a sense of how it was being accepted. We would move up then.

April Armstrong
I want to mention that the original emphasis for the online toolkit feedback from agencies was that they wish motorists were aware but they don't have the budget to create the outreach products. Federal Highway Administration undertook the creation of an initial set of core toolkit products that could be put in the hands of state and local agencies who may be running their own safety related outreach campaigns but don't have the budget to create this collateral.

One thing I think Federal Highway Administration would be interested in is if people like you all say these are great but we actually really don't have a lot of in-house outreach expertise and we could use, in addition to these products, some examples of outreach strategies. If the toolkit contained examples of public outreach strategies or step-by-step campaign examples, that would be helpful to have that in the toolkit. Or if Federal Highway Administration would consider undertaking a national level campaign themselves that local or regional entities could piggyback on, that might be helpful.

Those kinds of suggestions and feedback are the kinds of things that would be useful. Let the Federal Highway Administration know. The answer to your question is that the Federal Highway Administration generally has done a lot of that research. This toolkit now does not contain a specific example outreach strategy that state or local agencies could use. But it could. In fact, not only the Federal Highway Administration but ASHTO recently ran a full-day seminar conducting outreach for the public leveraging social media channels. There is a tremendous amount of fresh knowledge on how to execute cost-effective, low cost public outreach campaigns. Those kinds of tips are useful to include.

When we move to the panelists discussions, you will hear each of these people share their perspectives on running a cost-effective national level campaign that takes place at the grassroots or local level. Each of the four panelists has extensive experience doing that sort of thing from each organization. We can talk more on that as well.

Laurie Radow
We are joined by 4 panelists in their respective organizations. Each will share their perspective on the topic in the public outreach toolkit and why it is important. We will move through questions and invite anyone to share their ideas and questions in the chat.

Let's talk about the importance of traffic incident management toolkit from the organization perspective and how it relates to the State DOT and the motorist interest.

Dana Nolfe
Thank you for asking me to be a part of this webinar. There are so many demands on state transportation public information today. You have crisis communications, media, event planning etc. Many areas we would like to include, but because there are so many demands it can be very challenging.

The toolkit you have created is a great way for someone who is pulled in so many directions to be organized and to use this information in a focused way to get the message out to the road users. The goal is to increase travel reliability and have reliable information at a moment's notice including safety, congestion relief, environmental release, fuel saving, and emissions. Ultimately, we want to keep our roadway safe. The TIM toolkit allows us to do that with a click of the mouse.

Laurie Radow
Thank you. Justin, from an AAA perspective, can you give us your thoughts on the importance of the toolkit and how it relates to your motorist safety interest?

Justin McNaull
Yes. AAA has been interested in improving mobility. Making better use of the infrastructure we have is a key part. Getting incidents resolved and minimizing impact from a throughput standpoint is important. More recently, we have been in charge of the move over laws. We have been able to establish and improve these in almost 20 states in the last five years. There still is a challenge of raising awareness. If we can accomplish that, there are some real safety benefits.

Laurie Radow
Thank you Justin. Grady, from the Public Safety and specifically the Florida Highway Patrol, can you give thoughts on the importance of the traffic incident management public outreach toolkit and how it relates to your motorist safety interest?

Grady Carrick
Yes. Police, fire, EMS, towing, and everyone else who does their jobs on the roadways every day really appreciates the fact that someone is looking out for their interests. This goes beyond that. It extends to the safety and interest of the people passing by. The police officer making a traffic stop or the fire personnel saving a life, they are all exposed to the dangers created by traffic passing by. I know firsthand, standing a few feet from traffic on a busy highway is scary.

A momentary lapse of a bypassing driver can lead to death or serious injury. I want to add to the statistics to put this into perspective of safety for responders. If we think about it, on average about five firefighters are killed each year. On average, about 1 police officer is killed each month. There is a lot of danger presented in our jobs. We train our responders to be safe. But, we also need to help the drivers as well. The key to the outreach toolkit is promoting safety. We work together to make sure roadways are safe.

Laurie Radow
Thank you. Brian. May I ask for your thoughts from the motor vehicle administrator's perspective?

Brian Ursino
Before I do that I would like to begin with a personal issue. I was with the Washington State Patrol. Early in my career as a state trooper, I was struck and seriously injured while managing a traffic incident. This issue is very personal to me. With that said, one of the core missions is to ensure the drivers on the roadways are educated and qualified to be out there. If the behavior over time indicates they are not safe drivers as we take steps to correct, suspend, revoke, remove, re-train to ensure the public is as safe as they can be. This issue obviously is very consistent with overall public highway safety missions and the support of the national [ Indiscernible name ].

Laurie Radow
Thank you. Thank you for sharing that personal note with us. Dana. Can you give a brief perspective of why state DOT public information officers are interested in the importance of this outreach effort now that the toolkit is available?

Dana Nolfe
Every DOT is number one priority. Making sure the roadways are safe every time they use them is key. Having another message that reinforces that in a more focused way, is a very good thing as well. The acronym of TIM is going to click with the motorist. It is going to be something that is memorable and lends itself to a lot of creative marketing.

Laurie Radow
Thank you. Justin. Can you give a brief summary on the perspective of AAA on the importance of these outreach efforts?

Justin McNaull
You look at the motorist side. They are a key part of putting laws into action. The additional outreach should be helpful in helping us build upon those and get them into place and changing laws into behaviors.

Laurie Radow
Thank you. The topic of human behavior issues is good to keep in mind. Grady, can you explain why this toolkit is important to public safety, specifically what public safety does on the scene of an incident? What is the driver's role as well?

Grady Carrick
Much like Brian's example when he was in the profession, there is no more frightening sound than the squeal of tires when standing on the side of the road. It means someone is hitting the panic button. Often the sound of screeching tires ends in a familiar sound of a rear-end collision. These are secondary collisions.

It allows us to see that the dangers of incidents are not just for responders but the cars passing. The number of these secondary collisions is difficult to estimate. We know that they are largely preventable.

Impaired, speeding and distracted drivers are the culprits to the secondary crashes. But they can happen to anyone who is not using care when driving. Safely passing any kind of roadway incident is key.

Laurie Radow
Thank you. Can you re-affirm the importance why motorists need to be familiar with move over laws to protect the lives of unseen responders at risk of being struck?

Grady Carrick
Yes. These two laws are aimed at both of those at risk populations [motorists and responders]. Move it laws are aimed at reducing secondary crashes.

Many drivers believe that leaving cars where there are after a crash is the right thing to do. Nothing can be further from the truth. The messaging and the move it laws are what is important. They are relatively new. They require drivers to move over and/or slow down. In talking to troopers who have enforced this law in Florida, the people whom they stop actually knew about this law. They had a momentary lapse that precluded their compliance. Unfortunately, the same officer tells me about the blank stares he gets when he tells them they got stopped for a move over law. There are still people who have not heard of the move over laws. It is an opportunity to reach these groups.

Laurie Radow
Brian, a couple questions for you. All motorists deal with the State Department beginning at the driving career and regular intervals. Can you provide a perspective of the motor vehicle administrator's interest on the importance of this public outreach toolkit to raise awareness about the laws?

Brian Ursino
There is a keen interest. Referring back to the comment Dana made about the message on the motor vehicle administrators. We have to manage the priorities. Our CEO planned on including in the monthly newsletter, a piece about this outreach. We will provide the link through the toolkit. We will make recommendations. We will recommend that they consider using as much of the toolkit as they can, whether it is the posters in their offices or brochures.

April Armstrong
This is April. I would like to take a moment to make sure this question from Sarah is addressed. How would you push this toolkit to driver training programs where the driver training program is privatized and/or they limit the material offered? You just shared some thoughts on getting this curriculum out. What about privatized programs?

Brian Ursino
The more reputable, privatized programs tailor their training to the requirements to pass in that state. If the DMV includes this information in the driver booklet, I would assume most of the privatized driving schools would adopt that into their curriculum.

Justin McNaull
We are involved in the curriculum development side of driver education. In many states, you have a standardized curriculum. There are opportunities to look at this curriculum and to be sure there is sufficient content.

Laurie Radow
Great. I had conversations with individual states, but it would be great to do this across the nation.

April Armstrong
I want to make sure we don't lose Michael Scott's question. What about Drivers Ed. for move over laws? Is there anything more specific you need them to speak to?

Laurie Radow
Now we are moving to how organizations can use the toolkit to get this message out to motorists. We will start with Justin. With the desired outcome of the webinar to inspire stakeholders to expand their existing related outreach efforts relating to motor safety to include the message carried in the toolkit, what suggestions do you have to motivate these stakeholders to include this in their outreach? How do they piggyback this into their existing campaigns?

Justin McNaull
AAA has contents on both laws and safely navigating incidents. It is included. Specifically, when it comes to getting local and getting stakeholders involved, I encourage folks to talk to local AAA or other safety groups. In some states, you have an organized effort led by insurance companies or others around traffic safety about incorporating them into the messaging. Whether seasonal messaging around winter time and safe driving or summer when we see driving increasing for road trips. Or even the massive beach weekends or NASCAR races or other things that cause hundreds of thousands of people to try to get to the same place. Trying to piggyback on these other incidents can help give the opportunity to take messaging to the media.

The piece I would encourage when it comes to focusing on the motoring public is to focus on the specific actions we want drivers to take and the benefits that come and not necessarily concepts. Traffic management is a strategic important part. It is nice shorthand. For me as a motorist, the goal is not to get me to understand TIM or the benefits of congestion relief. It is trying to get me to understand that I need to move my car out of the roadway. Because it keeps me safer and helps keep everyone else from sitting in traffic longer. When I see lights on the side of the highway or amber lights, I know I need to slow down and move over.

Within the toolkit, it is looking to make sure the right tools are there for the audience you are trying to reach. I am trying to keep the postcard in a simple consumer-aimed message. The trifold or some of the other pieces is something to take to talk to a legislative representative.

Laurie Radow
That is very helpful. Thank you. I just made a list of all of those thoughts. We look forward to hearing from people as to how they have used this.

Grady. Thoughts of how grassroots organizations can partner with public safety to get the word out about these important laws in a way that will stick with the motorist.

Grady Carrick
Anyone can help share this message. They can do it simply by distributing the literature in the toolkit. A benefit of the toolkit is that they are customizable. They allow you to use photographs of local police and fire and transportation workers. We found using local talent creates ownership. If you have a local responder who was involved in a near miss or one who survived a struck-by incident like Brian, they make excellent spokespersons. They put a face on the message.

In my area we had a local trooper who became a celebrity when we put him on the poster. The news media did follow-up stories about his brush with fate. The average citizens respect their police and fire and are intrigued by their work. Putting a name and face on the safety message creates an excellent opportunity to get people's attention.

Laurie Radow
That is very helpful. Brian, may we ask for you to define the phrase graduated license programs?

Brian Ursino
There isn't a national definition. They vary from state to state. In the simplest terms, the parameters are placed on beginning drivers that are age-based that put parameters on their ability to drive such as curfews or limits the number of passengers in the vehicle with them or limits the age of the passengers that can be with them. These parameters vary from state to state. As they gain experience and graduate to the next level, they eventually have no driving restrictions.

Laurie Radow
Thank you. We would like to ask a question about this group of drivers. We understand many states have these programs to reach teen drivers. For example, California uses YouTube. May we ask your thoughts about how to reach this critical group of drivers? What is a good way to reach them?

Brian Ursino
You reach them by using tools they use to communicate. YouTube is a great tool. The biggest form now though is Facebook. A lot of the state agencies have their own Facebook pages. They update their messaging daily. That is a key way to communicate.

Laurie Radow
Thank you. That question that we heard about different outlets plays very strongly in how we keep up with outreach approaches. Justin, here is a question for you. Because of AAA and your leadership in the area of motor safety, can you share thoughts on how national level outreach research such as this toolkit can be thoroughly used to reach local or grassroots levels? How can webinar toolkit users put this to use?

Justin McNaull
We know that when it comes to teaching young people to drive, they learn from their parents. Not just during the learners permit and that solo driver phase, but also as 10, 11, 12 and 13-year-olds. They accept it as what you do on the road.

When it comes to communicating more broadly, I would say a large part of this is to try to push down to your constituent groups to see how you can create tools others can put into place. It is important to see if state agencies are looking for opportunities to help others do this. Whether the Secretary of State or whoever does something, think about how they can put materials forward. Your highway safety offices in the state should have a sense of who the partners are and who is involved at the retail level, if you will, in safety and the opportunities for communicating with people. In some states you find the state fair is a place for the highway safety office.

Recognizing that you are not alone in what you have to do with this and the more broadly you can cast your net, the more hands you will have to do the to work. The key piece is the ability to customize it. Having the right uniform is a huge piece. If you are doing a PSA, having the right accent adds authenticity.

Laurie Radow
Thank you that is a good point. To know your audience is important. Dana, do you have some ideas on how grassroots can partner with the State DOT to get the word out on these important laws?

Dana Nolfe
I would like to see us partner with traffic reporters. We can share the message, but to have that endorsement from a third-party a media endorsement, it could be done in a free way. If we can educate the traffic reporters, they can share the information for us. The ability to bring the traffic reporter into that environment so they can see what we do and understand the importance of sharing the message can be a great way to share this. I also agree using social media and using your states website where you can control the message will be a key way to share the TIM program.

Laurie Radow
Thank you. Let's move on to the third set of questions. Under the heading of tips for equipping volunteers and organizations to help outreach. Grady, can we ask for your thoughts?

Grady Carrick
I think Dana's point on bringing in traffic reporters and letting them get the insider's view is a good way. We cannot let everyone have that kind of access to our organizations or institutions. But, the opportunity for people to do "ride-alongs" with responders or our service patrols gives them insight into the responder perspective that they may not otherwise have had. That helps equip them in using the toolkit to put the message forward.

Laurie Radow
Thank you. Justin?

Justin McNaull
When you are doing an inventory of the possible messengers and who they can reach, not everyone involved in the efforts can talk to media. Some talk better to others. It is important to know who can reach various groups, and you can drill down into the trucking associations and the taxicab associations. It is a question of how creative you can get to drill down to different groups.

Laurie Radow
That is very helpful. At 2:30 we will start the media 101. Brian, what are your thoughts about equipping volunteers to help with the outreach?

Brian Ursino
I don't have a lot to add. Using mass media is one of the best ideas. A final thought on what we hope the administrators embrace. In addition to putting posters on walls which can be benign, more and more DMV offices are putting interactive displays and flat-screen TVs in the lobbies. They pay attention to those more than posters.

Laurie Radow
That is good to know. That is very helpful. I have to say. The world of media is changing as we developed this. Dana, what are your thoughts?

Dana Nolfe
Going off of the TV idea, movie theaters. We are all road users, so maybe it's talking to rotary clubs and business clubs and educating them. They look for monthly speakers. They can be captive audiences for sharing this message.

Laurie Radow
Very good. Your local rotary and other groups play a key role. We have another question for the panelists. Then we will do a slideshow to showcase our products. Dana, what is your advice for those that are not as familiar with TIM?

Dana Nolfe
Maybe we can consider tying the TIM message into large events that could have traffic incidents. Rhode Island has America's Cup Race coming into Newport. To build that into your regular message would be a good idea. We do water fire in Providence and a great influx of people head for building those messages in.

Laurie Radow
Very handy. Grady, what thoughts do you have?

Grady Carrick
In 30 years of law enforcement, there is room for everyone. We are all roadway users regardless of our age to some extent in the mobile society. We all have the ability to message. When we use the toolkit, we can message about these important issues with Move it and slow down, move over. There are a lot of things out there. We see effective things in schools. Even with kids talking about bicycle safety and how that's important. There really is a lot of room for everyone. We need to embrace everyone who comes along. The message is to use their own networks. If they maximize their networks and contacts, this can take off.

Laurie Radow
That is good insight. Justin what advice would you give?

Justin McNaull
I would try to build upon the special events and holiday specifics. If you are in one of those states where there is a "reach the beach" effort to get in in an organized way. This can be a way to take an existing time where there is already media attention and integrate the message. It is hard to create new opportunities on their own.

Laurie Radow
Thank you. Brian, what are your thoughts?

Brian Ursino
I think my colleagues have pretty much covered it. A key word I would use is saturation. The audience changes daily. Whatever network you have, saturation and repeating the message is important. The more we get the word out on a consistent basis, the better chance we have of people listening and hearing it.

Laurie Radow
You may have been last, but saturation is a keyword. Thank you very much. Before we go to the last round of questions, let's let April give a guided tour of the products.

April Armstrong
I won't show every single product. But, I want to give you a closer look than you could see with the Powerpoint. I want to ask others on the call currently to chime in with any other tactics or strategies that you think could work. What has worked or what do you believe could work with a local or regional campaign around this issue we are talking about today? We want to harvest all of the ideas that have been offered by the panelists and any of you who have put your ideas into the chat. We will create an informal starting point list of ideas and tips that might be helpful to others in the field.

This is an example of the poster. This is something that can be used in person if they are presenting to a group or club. They could have this as a tabletop display or behind them. Or potentially it could be hung in various locations. Brian had a great idea about the DMV lobby flat screens. This could be provided in electronic format. It has abstract language branding. You see in the word cloud: "safe, reliable, travel, smooth, fast." Those words convey the vision of effective traffic incident management when we all do our part. You see the core messaging that traffic incidents create unsafe situations, put lives at risk and cause delays. It goes into the three points of knowing your role. Moving your car to a safe place and out of the travel lane is important. Also, when you see flashing lights, slow down or move over. You can be ticketed for failure to do this. This is a law in the books. Finally, helping to keep your loved ones safe and avoiding a ticket. At the very bottom, there is not only a link that will go to the toolbox once this is live, but a follow-up e-mail will go out announcing when this toolkit is live. Lastly, you also see the buckle up tag line.

Now the postcard. It is an oversized flyer. Each of these products has been designed for cost-effective localized printing. These are designed in a way that they can be printed from a local personal printer if that is desired. They can also be shipped to a copy shop. They do not contain full bleed coloring. So, no special expensive printing is needed. This postcard is double-sided. It prints 2, 8.5 X 11 pages. These are customizable fields. You can input local information and put in a local photograph.

You see a duplicate here because it is two per page. There are a couple of key statistics. You see the key message and the list of things you can do to help. It shows things we need to know to be a part of solving this problem and protecting ourselves and other motorists as well.

Maybe we can bring up the third product which is the trifold brochure. In addition to these visual products, there is also a presentation that looks similar to the one we used today. It has talking points and suggestions for an interactive session. It could also be a virtual session. There is a press release sample with sample language. Again, it can be customized.

There is also a civic memo for helping to secure the support for a campaign from other organizations or associations if that is appropriate. There is also the talking points framework. Any or all of these can be used to help when you are meeting with other organizations to help identify a couple of the key messages or statistics that maybe of interest to them if they want to piggyback this messaging into the existing campaigns. This is what you see as an example of the tri-panel version of the brochure.

I want to acknowledge the panel of people that provided input in the shape of the design and messaging of these products. Laurie, help me if I fail to mention someone. Justin from AAA was a key contributor in an early focus group that was held. Also, [Frank Carroll] from AARP provided tremendous input in helping to shape these messages.

Laurie Radow
We had teams from AARP's Driver Education program.

April Armstrong
We also had a sampling of drivers from each of the major age demographics including college-age drivers. I do just want to acknowledge those contributions because they were instrumental in helping us to shape and refine this campaign. I also wanted to note that we will be making available a move over public safety announcement and a move it public safety announcement. Both of these, as they are ready, will also be added to the toolkit. They will be carried by the parent producing organizations as well. The Federal Highway Administration, which is also a cosponsor, will see that they are also included in the toolkit. You don't have to track them down through another channel. This toolkit is a one-stop shop.

If anyone on the call has other ideas either now or in the future as you put these to use of toolkit items you think would be useful. We have heard one from Brian that is readily done even within this version that can be used in providing a rotational message used on large flat screens such as in DMV offices. The Federal Highway Administration welcomes any ideas. We need to have the right kinds of strategies for getting these messages in front of motorists. Part of it is having the right kinds of products to make that doable. Feedback is really helpful from people like you who caused the Federal Highway Administration to undertake this toolkit and make it customizable. Feel free to put any thoughts into the chat now or at any time going forward. Contact information is in the toolkit as well.

Let me turn it back over to you, Laurie. I see great input coming in. We will make this chat stream available along with a transcript. It will be in the toolkit. We will also create a summary to distill these very good distribution ideas so that you don't have to mine through the files to find them. Hopefully that list will grow over time. Laurie, would you like to close this out as we begin to adjourn and move into the media 101 portion?

Laurie Radow
Yes. I want to thank everyone for their wonderful insight. I have a long list of all of the suggestions provided.

We made productive use of the past 90 minutes. This is the start. Your thoughts and how you put things to use will only enrich this outreach effort, and what we learn from you will feed others. Please, continue to add your thoughts and we will share. We will make sure to get the word out.

We are right at the 2:30 market and we want to thank you for joining us for these 90 minutes. And we invite you to stay for the next 30 for the media 101 session. This will help those who are a little less familiar with the media aspects of it so thank you very much.

April Armstrong
Thank you so much, Laurie. We will give a moment for those of you on the line who may need to move on, to have the moment to close out and hang up. We will also be bringing up, as we are right now, the presentation for again, the optional media 101 session. I am turning it over to Laurie in a moment to introduce the session. As I do, for those of you on the call, the media 101 training session is intended for two types of audiences.

It is both intended for those who may be with us who are civic or community leaders interested to lead or support a grass-roots campaign in your area around this issue. We have heard a lot of great ideas today that are very accessible for folks like that where they can pick up a phone tomorrow and begin to make phone calls to identify potential partners and opportunities for helping to get the word out on these important laws. But maybe you have limited or no experience, for example interacting with formal media partners even local journalist. If you are interested to get tips and familiarization around that, then this media 101 training would be for you. It is also, likewise, for some of our professional audiences from transportation, law-enforcement agencies for example or other civic association. Maybe you are a policy analyst, or a leader of a TIM program and you yourself might not directly be making immediate contact, but you are interested to get with your public information officer in your organization about how you can maybe work with that person to help get the word out about the issues we have talked about today. You too might be interested in this training because this training will help familiarize you with that person's world, the role of the public relations officer, to help you speak a little bit of their language so when you meet with them you are able to be more effective in getting them onboard and make even more progress with them in terms of preparing them to help support a campaign around this in your agency.

So, let me turn it over to you, Laurie, as we transition into our last 30 minute segment.

Laurie Radow
Thanks, April. I have to say thank you all for the 45 that are staying on. We know how precious time is. We thank you for staying on. As April said, this session is to define introductory information and tips for securing the support of local media for public interest campaigns such as this. The session will be led by two media trainers from Sage Communications, a Washington DC-based communications and public outreach firm. They are the designers of this outreach effort. It is my pleasure to introduce Jen Truong and Ann Marie Tropiano.

Jen has more than a decade of media training experience and has interviewed many reporters, coached more than 20 clients in media training. Ann Marie has seven years of experience leading media campaigns, and she has worked with well over 300 journalists at national, local and trade outlets that include print, online and broadcast media. Jen and Ann Marie, over to you.

Ann Marie Tropiano
Great. Thank you so much, and thank you everyone for joining us today and staying online. We're excited to have everyone. As Laurie briefly mentioned, Sage partners with the Federal Highway Administration for the development of the TIM public outreach toolkit. As in the earlier session, we invite you to ask questions about the presentation and to put them in the chat bar. At the end of the session, we will go to those questions and answer as many as possible.

As April mentioned, this is an introductory session for those of you who have no or limited experience with the media. We understand you may support a State DOT or working with an association or organization, or maybe a community leader. It would be helpful for you to get out these TIM messages. We will provide you with tips for interacting with the media.

On slide 2, we have the purpose of this training. So hopefully most of you were in the beginning of the webinar and got a taste of the tools in the toolkit. For those of you that did not, the toolkit will contain customizable tools that will help you in your traffic incident management campaign. For example, we have poster, brochure, an oversized postcard, a sample civic memo, a sample press release, and the talking points framework.

For the most part we will talk a little bit about the talking points framework because that has the most important messages in the TIM program. Those are messages you can use in your own campaigns and you can customize as you outreach to the media. So when you have the tools on hand, which you will early next week, it will be spread messages that have an impact. They will help you educate the public on the importance of Move it and slow down move over laws to promote safety. For those of you who will be leading a campaign, this focus is on programming the messages to the media so you might ask why the media? It is the channel that reaches a broad audience, and will provide credibility for your campaign.

Having the media outreach is really the initial step for contacting media. Once you feel you have a good story, you will be able to do outreach. Now what makes a good story? Actually, the panelists provided a lot of good examples on how to make a local campaign relevant and newsworthy. For example I know people were talking about times of the year like Memorial Day traffic or Labor Day Traffic or even large sporting events in your area, for example be America's cup. That is a great way to tie the campaign into something newsworthy.

In terms of tips for connecting with the media, the first thing you want to do is develop a targeted media list. You can do this by searching online, or looking into articles to see what types of reporters would be interested in your story. While your list may include bloggers or small community outlets, the training focuses primarily on interacting with credentialed reporters. When building your list you should like to have about 15 outlets. Within those outlets, you should have about 2 to 3 reporters. Next, you will draft your pitch to contact the reporters. Within the pitch, you will want to hook. You want to have something to make it newsworthy and timely, which could be traffic in your area or a local event or even a recent incident that may be an injured police officer.

After the hook, briefly explain the story and talk about the campaign. Close with how your story is relevant to the readers. Remember media is the channel to your readers, so you want to get across what is relevant. If you are in a local publication, you want to promote safety to the community so explain how important safety is for them. After you send out an e-mail pitch, you have to follow up with a phone call. It can seem daunting but remember reporters get these all the time. Be prepared. Know exactly what you want to say and have the pitch down pat. It is unlikely you will reach a reporter on the first right. You have to try several times.

We advise people not to leave a voicemail because they won't have time to call you back. Keep trying to call, and after you make about eight follow-up phone calls, if you have not gotten a hold of them, we suggest you go to another reporter at the publication and adjust your angle so it is a little bit more relevant for that reporters.

Finally, to successfully pitch, we like to use the formula that pitching is 1/3 research, 1/3 persistence, and 1/3 luck. Don't get overwhelmed by it, have fun with it. When you score an interview, it is a big success, and we will actually walk through steps into preparing for that interview so you make sure to maximize that.

Once the interview is secured, the more you prepare the better. At a minimum, know who the reporter is. You can do that by doing research. I mention the 1/3 formula, and the first third is research. Be sure to read their recent articles and look online at their LinkedIn profiles to find out about their interests. You should spend about one hour researching to get to know the reporter. Next, know what they want to talk about. Since you're the one who pitched the story you should steer the discussion but it is good to ask if there are other relevant topics they would like to discuss or one angle in particular they want to focus on. Thirdly, know where and when. Your interview may take place over the phone. If so, make sure you know who calls who, and if possible, definitely suggest an in person meeting if the reporter is local. You can take them out for coffee or lunch. Having that in person connection can go a long way.

So, once you know all of these things, you have to focus on effectively delivering your messages. Now that you have all the essential information, it is time to prepare for what you are going to say. The methodology for effective message delivery includes wanting to inspire and motivate the audience to act. In this case, we use the media as the channel to inspire readers to act. In order to make an impact on your audience, it takes the focus, content, and a clear call to action. We know with the TIM outreach program, a clear call to action is promoting the move it and move over laws as well an inspiring presentation. With the inspiring presentation, if you have gone through and been persuasive with pitching to the reporter, you will deliver an inspiring presentation.

Because we have limited time today, we are just focusing on focused content. The purpose of the talking points framework within the toolkit is to showcase these overarching messages. The great thing about the messages is you can take and customize them. There are even areas to input local statistics, facts, and anecdotes. You should use this to pyramid your message during an interview. The reason we have it this way is because this is the way reporters actually write stories. You want to start up delivering your headline which is your overarching statement.

Then, you want to back up the headline with proof points which can be validating statements, data, anecdotes, and in fact the talking points framework has a lot of national level statistics you can use. We encourage you to supplement with any local statistics as well and local stories. And then finally the bottom line where you can reframe your headline to reinforce it as well as state your clear call to action. Again, if the call to action is to reinforce the move it and move over laws, make sure to get those in there. Part of the reason we do this pyramid is because we need to keep reinforcing the message.

You can say we have a headline that is the statement and the bottom line reinforces that. We suggest that you continually use this format and go back to those messages. Now that you are fully prepared for the interview, I will hand it over to Jen to talk to steering the interview.

Jen Truong
Thanks, Anne Marie. We focused on all the great content that comes in the toolkit and how to go about really approaching the media as well as what you need to have in hand to really coach them in the most effective way. How would you go about controlling and steering the interview in the direction you want to take?

There are a couple things. We like to break it up into do's and don'ts of the interview. It may seem common sense such as acting friendly and maintaining eye contact, but others may not. Let's focus on what we want to stress first. First, we want to make sure that you are projecting command of your messages with confidence and passion. It is important for the message to be repeated because that increases retention. You should make sure that you are using the message framework that Ann Marie just went through.

Other things to keep in mind are that always make sure you clearly state what you want the audience to do. That means going to the website and clearly say what as an individual they need to do. Understand too that we really need to make sure everyone is aware that everyone has a part in this. At the same time, there are things we want to stay clear of such as saying no comment. Instead, you can defer to another expert on the topic or connect them to the right person to follow up with more information if necessary. There is no such thing is going off the record. When you talk with a reporter, everything is fair game. Also, you may get to the point when you are receiving a phone call from the reporter and don't ever feel pressure to accept the interview. There is always a reason why you should not be pulled. Pretend you have a meeting or a call to take, but the extra time you take in preparing is really going to be worth it. It will give you the time you need to do the homework.

As mentioned, one third is preparation, so take the time to find out who the reporter is and their background. Prepare your messages. Those are key things to keep in mind as you are preparing for this. Another thing you want to keep in mind is to prepare for the interview. You want to make sure you are preparing for selected questions and unlikely questions. Every question really is an opportunity to get across your message. As the spokesperson, certainly you are an expert on your program so there are opportunities to potentially be partnered with other organizations whether it is your state and local agencies or AAA, MADD, or the National Safety Council. Partnership with other groups can bring strength to your message. Bear in mind that reporters are really busy people and they cover a wide array of topics, so they don't have the opportunity sometimes to really do their homework. Sometimes you can be their friend and educate them. Some questions may be off the mark, but take the time to educate them, and it will really go a long way in building yourself as a credible expert in their eyes.

You may ask yourself how do you do this? How do you go about, when you are in the interview when they ask questions, what are some of the tactics you can take to get your message? One of them I like to use is called taking a break. In some cases reporters may ask questions that may be relevant or on the mark. Here is an opportunity for you to control the interview and steer the conversation to your message. Imagine, if you will, the picture of the bridge on the slide, think of it as a metaphor. Picture yourself walking across the bridge toward your messages.

There are a couple of phrases we like to use to help you make these effective transitions. We will put those into practice. Go to the next slide and you can see some examples here. For example, you have a question, a negative question, and it is off target. And in some cases what seems to be a negative question could be a dream question actually. The best way to go about this is if they ask if local agencies are not doing enough to fight congestion that lead to traffic incident. You can say no that's not the case, which is a brief answer. The key here is that is your bridge statement. You can say something along the line of our responders need the help of every motorist. It is important that everyone involved does their part. You can sometimes see that play out. Like I said, no matter what the question starts with whether it is an ideal question or an off target question, there is always a way to cross the bridge to get back to the message you want to get across.

In terms of other tactics, we use flagging. You probably see this play out with your conversations with people. If they have a lot of information to get through, one of the ways to really capture the attention of the reporter is to use certain statements to flag their attention. You can say "the heart of the issue is," or "it's important to take note of," and that will automatically signal to the reporter and your audience to perk up and listen. It is always a good way to pause, use the statement, and go to your key point if you need to.

Our favorite question of the day from every reporter is do you have anything else to add? Your answer is yes. Always yes. It's an opportunity for you to get back to your message and to restate the messages. So these are a couple of things to keep in mind. Keep in mind they both need to be used with a subtlety. And ensure transitions are smooth so it helps you get to the message you want to get to.

Before we close out we want to make this extra point here. As Anne Marie mentioned, the importance of preparation, persistence, and part luck because you never know what will be in the mix. Another key component is practice. We encourage you as all best public speakers in the world, from Bill Clinton to Obama, they all needed practice. We know that everyone, in order to keep up their game, it's the only thing that will give you the greatest level of comfort with your messages. An interview is like a presentation. Your job is to get to your audience's need, keeping in mind the reporter here is the channel to reach the audience. The most important thing is to get your message across. As you are practicing, practicing in front others, with others, listening to pointers they're giving you, try to get a good understanding of your strengths and at the same time your weaknesses and really focus on building that.

Of course we touched on a lot of different things today, certainly the toolbox, the basic building blocks to build awareness for TIM. Also, we walked you through the tips on how to secure an interview, what you need to know before going into the interview, how to tailor your content, and how to maintain control of your interview. As we started out saying this is just a one-to-one media primer, we certainly encourage you to continue to practice and get a little deeper with the training as well. Now it is time to hear from you. Any questions?

Ann Marie Tropiano
Let us know if you have questions or experiences you have had with the media. We would be interested to hear those.

April Armstrong
Certainly we want to invite anyone to enter any questions they have or provide any tips or tactics of their own to begin to help those with less experience or no formerly experience. Again not envisioning users of the toolkit, certainly not those on the media one-on-one webinar, are reaching out necessarily to national media channels, but they very likely will be soliciting the partnership of some local media channels, local media outlets to include traffic reporters for example. That is a tremendously, potentially useful ongoing partnership where the relationship with that traffic reporter could be hugely useful in not just getting the message out once, but continually reaffirming these laws to the drivers in that region. I think Brian said, you are not speaking to a room, you're speaking to a parade because every day you have to re-saturate your audiences with these messages in order for them to make an impression on folks. So preparing for a meeting with the traffic reporter would be important in terms of securing a long-term partnership.

Certainly be reporter might invite someone from the local media management office, so you would want to make a persuasive presentation when you meet with them. Any questions anyone on the line has? Again, you may hit star one if you like to verbally ask your question or you are invited to put the question into the chat, and we will give Jen and Anne Marie an opportunity to respond to your question and share thoughts on that.

Ann Marie Tropiano
While we are waiting for questions, picking up on what you said about the fact that in terms of the partnership with the media, ideally if you are doing things right that is what it should turn into is potentially a partnership. At the start, you are the one making the call to the reporter. If they come to you as an expert, you will be the one they go to when issues come up. You are able to have more opportunity to get across your message and make those points relevant in other ways as well.

April Armstrong
One thing that came to mind to me from the earlier webinar is someone emphasized that you are not in this alone and this notion of reaching out and thinking about who might make good partners in this kind of campaign. That would certainly include local or state level transportation or law enforcement agencies where if you were interested to secure an interview with one or more local reporters, and if you were able to potentially get someone from one of those agencies or a manager of the traffic management program to join you, certainly that would have to be coordinated most likely through the agency's public information office. That is the kind of thing to keep in mind. You might be involved or maybe it would be through the public information officer in securing the interview, but providing that PIO with collateral or material they can use to secure the interview is where you could put some of these tips and tactics to use to help save that person more time and make it easier for that PIO to take the action you would like them to take which is to secure the partnership or placement of the article in the local journal. If there are no questions, what we will plan to do is make sure everyone knows this training will be made available, this presentation as well as the chat and recording will be available in the toolkit under the media 101 resource section.

So, everyone knows they can access this at a later time or certainly pass it along to other colleagues who may be interested in it. I am showing we are coming right up on 3:00 right now. This was a high level overview survey introductory webinar. Obviously only 30 minutes but again the goal was to familiarize folks who may have little to no experience working with formal media outlets and to give them a little bit of background on how you interact effectively with outlets and ideally get the response you would like. This means partnerships and favorable coverage around your issue of interest, and in this case, using some of the toolkit items, in particular, the talking points framework. This framework would probably be most useful in this particular interaction. This segment was about putting the actual toolkit items to use when you are reaching out to a media partner. And with that, let me turn the phone over to Laurie to officially close us out. Thank you Jen and Anne Marie.

Laurie Radow
Thank you Jen, Anne Marie and April. Thank you to everyone who joined in. We hope you found it to be valuable. Your questions and input were very valuable. We will summarize those and add them to the webpage. We hope you will keep us posted as you put the traffic incident management toolkit to use and let us know how it is going. That is the only way it will grow and improve. Thank you for your help in keeping people safe and moving on our nation's roadways. Thanks again, bye.

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