I-77 Work Zone Speed Limit Reduced, Police Increase Patrols
GARFIELD HEIGHTS (Tuesday, June 21, 2011) – Too often workers are seriously injured or even killed in construction zones when motorists are speeding, not paying attention or driving under the influence. In response to several recent dangerous incidents involving construction workers, the Ohio Department of Transportation will reduce the speed limit to 50 mph in the active work zones along I-77 between Valley Parkway and Pleasant Valley Road through the Fall of 2011.
The active work zone (when workers are present) will change locations daily and nightly along the north and southbound lanes of this stretch of highway until Fall of 2011 as crews perform asphalt operations. Therefore, the 50 mph speed limit will be enforced in the location of the active work zone. Proper signage will be in place for awareness and law enforcement will heavily enforce the newly implemented speed limits. “Fines doubled” signs are also in place throughout the work zone.
Since late April, at least four serious incidents have occurred along this stretch of highway involving suspected intoxicated motorists and/or dangerous speeds. One incident proved to be fatal for a motorist, and another incident injured three A&A Safety employees who were working in the construction zone. In 2009, A&A Safety employee Greg Wood nearly lost his life after being hit in the same zone by an intoxicated motorist who served prison time as a result. “We’re out there doing our job, performing a public service to make the roads better and it’s a sad thing to see how reckless people can be,” said Wood.
ODOT is teaming up with law enforcement from Broadview Heights, Brecksville, Independence and the Ohio State Highway Patrol to send a zero-tolerance message to motorists who do not follow speed limit reductions in this work zone. “We won’t tolerate this trend of workers being hurt in senseless situations. If you’re going to speed or drive unsafe through work zones, you’re going to have to pay the consequences,” said ODOT spokesperson Jackie Schafer.
For more information contact:
The ODOT District 12 Communications Office at (216) 584-2005
or email D12.PublicInformation@dot.state.oh.us