It looks like the warm spring weather is finally here to stay. This welcome arrival brings many things, including a ramp-up in road construction. While the road repairs are also a necessary and welcome arrival, the dangers from inattentive drivers entering work zones are not.
To remind drivers to pay attention while approaching road construction zones, National Work Zone Awareness Week is held each April. This year’s observance recently ended, but not before a flurry of information and statistics were disseminated.
For example, according to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, 609 people were killed in work zone crashes in 2012, the most recent year for which such national data is available. That same year, 132 of the fatal work zone accidents involved drivers of commercial trucks and buses.
Two other important facts about work zone crashes in 2012. Thirty five percent of all crashes in road construction sites involved a speeding driver, and about four out of every five who suffered injuries in work zone accidents were drivers and their passengers.
The Associated General Contractors of America, an organization with obvious reasons for being concerned over roadway work zone accidents, conducted its own study on the subject. According to that effort, 20 percent of accidents in work zones injure construction workers and 6 percent of the crashes kill crew members.
Top Reasons for Missouri Work Zone Accidents
Construction firms across the country participated in the study. Enough Missouri firms responded to develop specific data points for the Show Me State:
• Between 2009 and 2013, work zone accidents in Missouri killed 53 people and injured 2,700 more.
• 16 Missouri Department of Transportation workers have been killed in road construction crashes since 2000.
• The top reasons for Missouri work zone accidents in 2013? In order, they were: following too closely, improper lane usage, inattentive drivers, speeding, and failure to yield.
Those severely injured – construction workers or not – in motor vehicle accidents caused by the negligence of another driver deserve to be compensated for the damages they’ve suffered. Attorneys experienced in investigating complex motor vehicle accidents can review legal options with these victims.