Traffic safety and safe driving habits are typically not topics of discussion that are exciting or fun to discuss. While they may not be topics that are actively avoided, there is little desire to breach these topics unless an incident occurs that prompts the discussion (i.e. car accidents, tickets, etc.). The result is commonly a negative and even aggressive attitude between fellow road users, and a lack of discussion promoting safe driving practices. In an effort to change the culture to be more positive and collaborative, many jurisdictions have begun adopting programs that present safety messaging with a more lighthearted approach in their delivery. This document outlines the implementation and reception of Traffic Tuesday, a new initiative managed by the City of Calgary’s Traffic department.
Traffic Tuesday was inspired by a similar program started by Iowa’s Department of Transportation (DOT) called Message Monday (ITS Canada, 2020). The idea is to increase safety awareness and improve safe driving practices. Awareness is brought through the use of unconventional messages that are posted weekly on Dynamic Message Signs (DMS). The style of the messages incorporates a variety of themes, ranging from upcoming holidays to pop culture references to rhyming schemes and more. The conversation prompted through these atypical messages attempts to shine a light on the current state of safety while increasing the road education and driving moral of the average driver and citizen.