What is an Automated Flagging Assistance Device

Automated Flagging Assistance Device (AFAD)

In traffic control on roadwork sites, safety is of paramount importance. One specialized piece of equipment that has revolutionized traffic control is the Automated Flagging Assistance Device (AFAD). An Automated Flagging Assistance Device, or AFAD for short, is a specialized piece of equipment used in traffic control on roadwork sites. AFADs are remotely operated temporary traffic control devices that are equipped with high visibility signage, 12-inch red signal heads, and an automated gate arm. Automated Flagging Assistance Devices are designed to direct and control traffic safely and efficiently.

Utilizing a single worker, AFAD worksite operators manage traffic control safely without direct exposure to traffic flow. However, it is important to note that AFADs are not a replacement for traditional traffic control flaggers. Due to widespread regulations against fully automated traffic control, AFADs must be used in conjunction with human flaggers to ensure safe and effective traffic management. AFADs are designed for daily, short-term lane closure job sites and can work on stationary jobs, intersections, mobile utility jobs, road construction jobs, and various other job types. You can request Site 20/20’s job site playbook here to learn more about job-specific AFAD setups.

automated flagging assistance device components

The History of Automated Flagging Assistance Devices.

AFADs have been the subject of criticism within the traffic control industry due to various issues, despite bringing renewed innovation. Some early models were unreliable and prone to malfunctions. Additionally, some AFADs are considered too bulky and difficult to maneuver, requiring multiple people and creating safety hazards on job sites.

The Future of AFAD Technology—The Guardian SmartFlagger AFAD

Site 20/20’s mission was to take the conventional Automated Flagging Assistance Device and innovate its technology, making it lighter, safer,  and more efficient. The Guardian SmartFlagger (GSF) AFAD is the most innovative AFAD on the market for the following reasons:

  1. Lightweight and Compact: Measuring just 24 inches wide, the Guardian SmartFlagger AFAD is the industry’s smallest, lightest, and most portable AFAD. The GSF AFADs are specifically designed to fit in the back of a standard pickup, allowing for seamless transport and easy setup/teardown.
  2. Integrated with Google Maps and Waze: From the moment a worksite is live, the GSF AFAD produces data that will alert road users of its location and redirect traffic to an alternate route, decreasing the rate of work zone intrusion and increasing site safety.
  3. Patented Live Video Recording: The Guardian SmartFlagger AFADs are the only AFADs on the market with cameras located under the light head that increase site visibility for the operator, decreasing liability and increasing accountability on every site.
  4. Equipped with Data and Monitoring Software: The Guardian SmartFlagger AFAD comes equipped with Site 20/20’s Partner Portal, enabling users to view daily reports on car counts, average wait times, and stream live video from each job site remotely.

Fun Fact: Site 20/20 has a perfect accident record, boasting zero injuries across all worksites with the Guardian SmartFlaggers.

Learn more

To learn about how to set up an AFAD, find our blog, “AFADs: How to Set Up a Guardian SmartFlagger AFAD .”