Slow Down For Safety in Work Zones!

MARIETTA (Wednesday, July 6, 2011)--The summer construction season is in full swing, which is why The Ohio Department of Transportation is reminding motorists to take it slow through work zones

Did you know you’re more likely to be injured or killed in a work zone on a dry and sunny August afternoon than any other time of the year? That’s what ODOT safety experts discovered after analyzing 10 years of crash statistics.

In a report released by ODOT, data shows that there were 5,038 work zone crashes last year resulting in 1,262 injury crashes and 10 fatal crashes – down from 5,105 crashes, 1,286 injury crashes, and 13 fatal crashes in 2009.

While there is no upside when talking about injuries and deaths in work zones, the data is promising. Since 2001, the number of crashes in work zones has gone down 37 percent and the number of fatal crashes has dropped by 50 percent.

"One injury or fatality is one too many, which is why we’re making work zone safety a top priority in District 10," said T. Steve Williams, P.E., District 10 Deputy Director.

According to ODOT’s analysis, the top three causes of work zone crashes can be prevented. They include following too closely, failure to control and improper lane changes.

The best advice: How you drive keeps you and others alive.

"We want motorists to remember to take it slow through work zones and be cautious of the workers out on the road, their safety is also our priority," said Williams.

To help motorists better navigate through work zones, ODOT continually utilizes new technology and refines its policies.

Beginning this year, ODOT will require its contractors to use high-intensity flashing lights and reflective tape on all equipment in work zones. Additional signing and special warnings for motorcyclists have been added in recent years.

For up-to-the-minute road conditions and details on highway construction projects in every area of the state, visit ODOT’s premier website www.BuckeyeTraffic.org.

###

For more information contact:

Brenna Slavens, Public Information Officer, at (740) 568-3904

or email D10.PIO@dot.state.oh.us