Key Points for TIM Program Success

As a summary, a number of key points for excellence in TIM programs emerged from the agency interviews. These key points include:

  • Focus on all incidents, not just major incidents or those involving fatalities. Apply TIM strategies to all incidents, because BIG incidents happen infrequently.
  • The DOT and the state police should be joined at the hip on TIM.
  • Data mining software and expertise is essential to understand how to continually focus and improve TIM program and strategies.
  • The executive level must be engaged – to sell TIM, use a 1-2 page summary with executive talking points.
  • Use a single point of entry for all data.
  • Many DOT personnel feel that co-location with the state police is absolutely key to successful TIM programs. Data sharing is also essential and a first step. Co-location can help with joint dispatch and more effective TIM strategies.
  • Use of a TMC dashboard to allow operators to see and visualize the information, beyond just data entry into a database.
  • TIM performance measures suffer when there is no active focus on TIM and no field operational units (e.g. freeway service patrol).
  • Training is key. What is a secondary crash? What is quick clearance? What is the result of implementing quick clearance?
  • Focus on saving the lives of first responders.
  • Involve the media in the TIM program.
  • For effective data sharing, when CAD data are not available, the state police must pass along all incidents to the DOT, no matter how minor the incident.
  • For success, make TIM uncomplicated, invaluable, and applicable to everyone.
  • Look deeper into performance measures, and relate the measures to traffic volumes and travel times. Get the deeper picture.