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Employees asked to watch for suspicious activities

The Idaho Transportation Department has taken measures – especially since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 – to ensure the safety/security of its employees and to protect state property.

Closed-circuit television allows a security officer stationed in the lobby of the main building at Headquarters a constant view of 24 locations within the building. All persons entering the building or walking its halls are visible on the officer’s security screen.

And the introduction of employee ID/entrance badges at the Headquarters campus last year ensures that only authorized personnel have access to secure locations within the buildings.

Five officers from Allied Security (which is part of the Capitol Mall security team) are assigned to ITD’s Headquarters, ensuring 24-hour security, seven days a week.

Even with those added safeguards, however, much of the responsibility to maintain a safe and secure workplace begins with employees, suggests Derk Leavitt, the daytime security officer whose responsibilities also include providing general information to individuals who enter the lobby.

His best advice for ITD employees is to watch for and report any instances that appear unusual or suspicious, “something that looks like it doesn’t belong.” A security officer can always be reached by calling 334-8880 or extension 8880.

While vigilance is important during the winter when employees often arrive and leave in darkness, it also is very important in the summer when ITD’s campus attracts more visitors. Youths tend to congregate in parking lots and open areas behind the Headquarters buildings.

Here are specific ways employees can contribute to their own safety and that of others, both at Headquarters, district offices and remote ITD locations.

  • At Headquarters, employees should carry their ID/entry badges at all times
  • Those badges should be visible to others who work at ITD
  • Never leave badges in your vehicle, whether it is locked or not
  • Never leave badges on your desk, purse or coat
  • Do not let strangers enter secured areas of the building with you, unless their badge is visible
  • Report all suspicious activities – occurring both within buildings and in parking lots – to ITD security
  • Report all threats to safety, security or property to ITD Security
  • Don’t hesitate to ask a security officer to escort you to your vehicle if you leave when it is dark
  • Use the "buddy system" … walk with another person to your car or parking lot
  • Remember to remove your keys and turn the headlights off before leaving your car
  • Do not leave your vehicle unlocked
  • Do not leave valuables in plain view, whether in your car or at your work station
  • Keep the emergency notification/bomb threat reporting card near your telephone and be prepared to follow its instructions in the event of a telephone threat
  • Know the emergency evacuation procedure for your work area and where to meet outside if evacuation is necessary
  • Know where fire extinguishers are located
  • Know where first aid kits are located
  • Constantly be aware of your surroundings
  • Continue to work in freedom and confidence, recognizing that your safety and security is the department’s paramount concern