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Have you or one of your co-workers recently built an innovative gadget or developed an improved way to do a job? The "Innovation Volunteers" competition offers you the chance to show off your creativity. (This competition is part of the FHWA Center for Local Aid Support - Build a Better Mouse Trap competition. For additional information go to https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/clas/babm/.

The purpose is to collect and distribute real world examples of best practices, tips from the field, and assist in the transfer of technology for local and county transportation workers and other LTAP/TTAP clients.

We are looking for projects that you, your employees or crew designed and built. Projects can be anything from the development of tools, equipment modification, and/or processes that increase safety, reduce cost, improve efficiency, and improve the quality of transportation.

The benefits to Local Road Agencies:

  • The Innovation Volunteers program provides recognition for local road agencies and their employees, shows them that their ideas have value, and recognizes them on a national stage. This recognition can benefit them locally as well, by showcasing the agency to the county and/or the state .
  • Shows respect for the individuals and teams that do more than put in their 8 hours each day, no matter how significant an improvement seems in a national context. These innovations
    • move the needle a little bit in the right direction, producing small, but important, savings in cost and time, increased safety, increased durability, greater reliability, and less downtime,
    • made someone's job easier, stretched dollars further, or resulted in better roads for their community, and
    • allowed someone to do more with less.

Examples of Innovations by Local Agencies:

Beaver Pipe Cage
https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/clas/babm/2020/beaver_pipe_cage.aspx

Jaws of Life
https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/clas/babm/2020/jaws_of_life.aspx

Spring Load Arm Enhancement for Gravel Saver
https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/clas/babm/2020/spring_load_arm_enhancement.aspx

2020 Entries
https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/clas/pdfs/2020_mousetrap_entries_booklet.pdf

2019 Entries
https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/clas/pdfs/2019_mousetrap_entries_booklet.pdf

Judging criteria will be based on a five point scale used at both the state and national levels:

  • Cost
  • Savings/Benefits to the Community
  • Ingenuity
  • Ease of Transference to Others
  • Effectiveness

The deadline to submit your entry is May 17, 2021

Click here to submit your entry online.

Click here to download an entry form to send in by mail.

Good luck!