Busy highways are dangerous places. So are rural roads. It’s every driver for themselves and, unfortunately, many of your fellow motorists are driving while texting, driving aggressively, driving drunk, or simply not paying attention to the task at hand. Add to this alarming situation a construction zone and the dangers just multiplied. Car crashes in and around summer construction work zones are a common problem.
How Drivers Can Cause Car Crashes in Road Construction Work Zones
Summer drivers can be impatient. They want to get where they’re going and they don’t want a construction area to hold them up. Summer drivers can also be a little lazy. They’re ready to vacation and they’re fine with getting there when they get there and may not be paying the best attention to the task at hand.
Both sets of circumstances create unsafe drivers. When you’re anxious or irritated, you may try to push through a construction area at a faster pace than is safe or posted. When you’re laid back and daydreaming, you may miss important signage or alerts.
Motorists want their mobility, and they don’t want highway construction zones taking that speed and forward progress away from them. The consistent enforcement of work zone safety laws can help influence driver compliance, but crashes still occur, even when everyone is on their best behavior. Motorists can drive right into highway workers, collide with moving or stationary equipment, or hit a barrier. All these occurrences can lead to a potentially fatal crash.
How Highway Construction Zones Can Be Responsible for Car Crashes
A combination of factors in roadway construction zones can easily result in car crashes, injuries, and fatalities to drivers, passengers, and construction workers:
- Daily changes in traffic patterns
- Narrowed rights of way
- Other construction activities
- Changes in speed limit
Any car accident in a construction zone also causes excessive delays in traffic, especially given the already constrained driving environment.
But some construction zones are more dangerous than others, and they can be the reason for motor vehicle accidents, especially if:
- Cones or barriers are missing or in the wrong place
- Incorrect signage
- No signage
- Lack of construction zone warnings or speed change warnings
- Poor lighting
Road crews or their company or municipality can be to blame for incorrectly staged work zones that result in a traffic accident.
Lowering the Dangers in Highway Construction Zones
The State of Michigan has a Work Zone Safety Task Force, established in 2018 as a collaborative effort between the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) and Michigan’s highway construction industry. The goal? To reduce and eliminate work zone injuries and deaths for both motorists and construction workers.
Roads, bridges, and any transportation infrastructure are considered heavy construction, a category that requires specialized equipment, civil engineering, and special equipment needed to carry out the job. MDOT is working to make work zone safety an even greater aspect of our culture, but it’s also up to every individual to do their part to prevent car crashes and collisions with construction workers.
If you have been involved in an auto accident in a highway construction zone, contact personal injury lawyer David C. Femminineo at Femminineo Attorneys in Macomb County.