A new study released by the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) showed that over two-thirds of construction firms said a car crashed into their highway work zones in the past year. The stats highlight what roadworkers already know: Highway work is dangerous.
As massive roadwork projects continue on Minnesota’s interstate highways, it’s important to keep safety in mind when you head out on your summer road trips.
The study conducted by the AGC revealed other statistics that draw attention to the dangers of roadway construction work. According to the firms who experienced work zone crashes:
- 70 percent said drivers or passengers faced injuries in crashes
- 62 percent said crashes caused project delays
- 28 percent said there were driver or passenger fatalities in crashes
- 28 percent said workers faced injuries in crashes
- 8 percent said workers were killed in crashes
But this study is not an aberration. Work zones are consistently dangerous places for workers and drivers alike. According to the Federal Highway Administration, which oversees work zones:
- 4,400 people died in work zones in the past five years
- 85 percent of work-zone fatalities are drivers
- 200,000 injuries occurred in work zones in the past five years
- Rear-end crashes are most common in work zones
Work zones are hazardous, but there are precautions that you as a driver can take to make sure that everyone stays safe.
- Avoid distractions like using phones or adjusting the radio
- Pay attention to brake lights ahead of you
- Merge well before lane closures
- Keep a safe distance from the car in front of you
- Do not speed under any circumstances
- Change lanes only where allowed
- Be patient