Richmond Area Municipal Contractors Association offers initiatives, training and more

Vanessa Patterson

Executive Director, RAMCA

Safety should be a central focus of every company involved in the heavy construction, utility, and road and bridge building industries. Safety for workers, customers, and the public is increasingly important to the success of companies in the building industries. The ability to secure bids, particularly local, state and federal government projects, is increasingly tied to safety measures like insurance ratings. Before a company is awarded a project, the client is probably asking “Is this company operating and performing its work safely?”

RAMCA’s safety committee, led by Tracey Lamb of VA811, works with member company safety directors to develop a culture that promotes accident-free workplaces and jobsites. RAMCA partners with state agencies to promote programs designed to positively impact public safety in the commonwealth. RAMCA participates in the SCC’s Underground Damage Prevention monthly Advisory Council meetings in efforts to reduce and, ultimately, eliminate potentially deadly accidents caused by those involved with excavating around underground utilities, including gas lines. Best practices for the excavating and related industries are developed. Examinations of recent incidents are undertaken to understand what steps or policies are prudent to take to continue to improve Virginia’s incident rate.

RAMCA is also an authorized administrator of two VDOT certification programs required for those companies working on VDOT projects. Erosion and Soil Control Contractor Certification (ESCCC) training classes are required for any company performing a land-disturbing activity that occurs within the VDOT right-of-way. The project must be supervised by a certified Erosion and Sediment Control (ESC) contractor who is required to be onsite at all times during that land-disturbing activity. The class trains on appropriate procedures to keep the public’s water safe from construction debris and runoff as well as how to prevent flooding or landslides caused by inappropriate land-disturbing practices. RAMCA’s ESCCC training classes are open to both member and non-member companies.

VDOT has established a mandatory Work Zone Traffic Safety Training Program. As of July 1, 2009, any employee of a heavy construction company who is responsible for work zone traffic control planning, design, implementation, inspection, and/or supervising the selection, placement, or maintenance of traffic control schemes and devices in work zones on the State Highway System is required to have this training. RAMCA administers basic, intermediate, and advanced Work Zone Safety Courses bi-monthly. This training is designed to eliminate work zone accidents that have injured and killed workers, pedestrians, and drivers and to minimize the inconvenience of road and bridge construction by appropriately designing lane closures with the least impact to the flow of traffic. These training classes are also open to non-member companies.

Vanessa Patterson can be reached at

Upcoming RAMCA events:


RAMCA Associate Showcase

Short Pump Hilton Hotel & Spa

12042 W. Broad St.

6 p.m.



Draper Aden Associates

1030 Wilmer Ave.

9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

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