Buddy Barrel and Connie Cone
With increased growth throughout our state, work zones and construction related activities also are reaching unparalleled proportions. In 2008, there were 21 fatalities in North Carolina work zones. This number of fatalities confirms the need for aggressive and creative ways to increase safety and awareness in work zones.
In 1989, NCDOT created the Work Zone Safety Program in an effort to reduce fatalities in North Carolina work zones. The program mascots, Buddy Barrel and Connie Cone, were created and copyrighted to increase work zones safety awareness and education among a variety of audiences across the state.
The original Buddy Barrel and Connie Cone were inspired by Georgia’s Cone Man. The mascots are shaped like a construction barrel and traffic cone and represent some of the most visible elements of a work zone.
In 2001, the department began to process of updating and redesigning the mascot costumes. After a year in creative design, the new and improved Buddy Barrel and Connie Cone costumes debuted in 2002. Since then, Buddy Barrel and Connie Cone have become some of the most recognized and well-loved symbols of NCDOT’s ongoing commitment to work zone safety. They have been featured in numerous parades, school functions, state fairs, community events, and department conferences in order to make current and future motorists more aware of work zones and their part in work zone safety.
In addition, Buddy Barrel and Connie Cone have been featured on a variety of promotional items. Items such as pens, pencils and key chains are distributed at no charge upon request and at mascot appearances. The items serve as a lasting reminder of the importance of work zone safety and the role each motorist plays in making work zones safer.
Buddy Barrel and Connie Cone may be able to attend your fair, parade, classroom or community event.
On behalf of NCDOT, Buddy Barrel and Connie Cone remind you to “Drive Smart. Do Your Part.”