With the theme, “Drive Safe. Work Safe. Save Lives.” National Work Zone Awareness week is a great time to remind us all to drive safely in work zones. According to the National Work Zone Safety Information Clearinghouse, in 2018, there were 673 fatal crashes that lead to 757 fatalities with 124 of those fatalities being workers. Additionally, in 2018, there were a total of 123,000 work zone crashes that resulted in 45,000 injuries. In honor of all of those who have lost their lives or have sustained injuries, we present ways that you can observe safety practices while driving through work zones:
- Turn your headlights on. In many states, it is illegal to drive through a work zone without headlights turned on. Many work zones may indicate if headlights should be on by posting a sign at the beginning of the work area.
- Drive the posted speed limit. In many work zones, speed limits are reduced to protect roadside workers.
- Pay attention. Distracted driving can lead to a multitude of accidents, especially in a work zone area where there are many moving parts, equipment, and people. So put the phone down, turn your music volume to low, and really pay attention to the road.
- Maintain a safe distance. What is worse than getting stuck in slow traffic? Being in a fender-bender because you were following too close. You need to be prepared to stop in a work zone, and as such, you should maintain a safe following distance so that you have enough time to safely stop.
We all need to do our part to keep our roadways and work zones safe for everyone. You can learn more about National Work Zone Awareness week here: https://www.nwzaw.org
To our partners in construction you can seek a great deal of resources around work zone incidents, key exposures and safety training through the National Work Zone Safety Information Clearinghouse and OSHA.