Make Work Zone Safety a Priority
This April, we celebrate work zone awareness week, which is a time to reflect on how dangerous road construction zones are. In 2017 alone, almost 800 people were killed in a work zone crash. The victims included drivers, cyclists, pedestrians, and 132 highway workers, according to the Construction Equipment Guide website.
With weather around the country improving after a brutal winter, motorists should be encountering more construction crews on the road. The same is true in warm-weather states like Florida. Safety should be everyone’s top priority, so make sure to practice sensible driving whenever you come upon a construction work zone. Someone’s life depends on it.
This is easily the most important step to take. Signs will probably warn you to pump your brakes. But even if they don’t, you should reduce your speed. By going slower, you can avoid striking a highway worker or another vehicle. You will also gain additional time to take defensive action.
Vehicles also become congested in construction zones, so any vehicle speeding could potentially trigger a chain reaction of accidents, increasing the number of victims.
Look for Other Vehicles Entering the Work Zone
One major cause of work zone accidents is dump trucks. These trucks can collide with cars and people on foot if you are not watching for them. They are also very heavy, which increases the likelihood of fatal or serious bodily injuries.
As you drive through the work zone, keep your eyes peeled and hit the brakes if you need to stop. As the Department of Transportation reminds us, large trucks need more distance to stop, especially when travelling at high speeds. For example, a truck going 55 miles per hour will need about 50% more space to stop than a smaller passenger vehicle.
Give Yourself More Room
You don’t want to follow other vehicles too closely, so leave more of a cushion than you normally would out on the road. This will give you time to brake, if necessary, without slamming into the rear of the vehicle in front of you.
Always Follow the Flagger’s Directions
Flaggers are there for a reason: to manage the flow of traffic and protect everyone’s safety. Too many people ignore flaggers and think they can just blow through a construction zone. But when a flagger tells you to stop, you need to stop.
Wear Your Seatbelt
Seat belts save lives. Even if you get into a collision, you have a good chance of surviving so long as you and everyone in your car wears a safety belt.
Injured in a Work Zone? Protect Your Rights by Calling Earnhart Law
Earnhart Law has handled car accident cases for decades, and we know how to pull together the evidence necessary to submit a valid insurance claim. After a crash, you might not think that anyone is in your corner. We are.
To talk to a Delray Beach car accident attorney, please call 561-265-2220. You can schedule a free, confidential case evaluation but don’t delay. Florida gives injured drivers and passengers a short window of time to protect their rights.