Traffic Analyst

Track transportation data to keep traffic flowing freely.

What does a Traffic Analyst do?

Traffic Analysts generally work for the government, and spend their days playing in traffic-figuratively, of course.

Conducting field studies of traffic patterns, you occupy yourself as a Traffic Analyst counting cars and watching traffic. You identify areas with specific traffic flow problems by gathering information on the rate of traveling speed and the effectiveness of traffic signals.

For example, you observe a long line of cars waiting to make a left turn at a signal. You quickly realize that the signal length may be the problem. Working with the Traffic Engineer, you study the signal length to determine if it should be increased, thereby allowing traffic to flow more freely.

Next comes the desk part of your job as a Traffic Analyst. Taking the data gathered, you create reports describing the traffic problems you saw, along with offering recommendations for solving them. The reports also include drawings of potential solutions such as traffic signals, sensors to activate the signals, or proposed expansion of the roadway. Computer skills are necessary since you’re likely to use computer-aided drafting (or CAD) software in your daily work.