Roadway construction is dangerous work. Not only do these men and women deal with heavy equipment and inclement weather, but they must also be on the lookout for reckless drivers. Road crews are placed in hazardous conditions on a daily basis, and it is up to every driver on the road to ensure that they are not the cause of injury or death to one of these workers.
Spring time is the official kickoff to orange barrel season. Most drivers across the country will notice that road construction carries on well into the summer. As you drive this season, stay aware of what is going on around you. Here are some tips that will help you avoid an accident while driving through a construction zone.
The Types of Accidents That Occur
Most of the accidents that occur in construction zones are the side-swiping of equipment, rear-end collisions and hitting workers. Many are caused when a driver is either speeding through the zone or paying attention to something else. Distracted driving is the cause of a great number of accidents, both in and out of construction zones.
Causes of Crashes
As we have said, distracted driving is a top cause of accidents inside of construction zones. A vehicle driver may be talking on their cell phone, texting, or doing any number of things behind the wheel that take their attention away from the road ahead.
Another cause of accidents that is relatively common in construction zones is merging. Drivers may ignore signs that a lane is closed ahead until the last minute, speeding up to cut in front of another driver. If you see a lane-closure sign or a sign alerting you to construction ahead, move where instructed sooner rather than later.
How to Avoid Accidents
Avoiding accidents in construction zones is not difficult. When you see a sign telling you that a lane is closed ahead, merge into the open lane when it is safe to do so. Do not speed up and try to merge at the last possible moment in an attempt to get to the head of the line.
Leave enough space between you and the vehicle in front of you. You need room to stop should that driver slam on their brakes or slow down faster than you anticipate. If someone is tailgating you and you can do so, pull to the other lane and let them pass.
Stick to the posted speed limit when traveling through a construction zone. In many cases, the speed limit will be lowered from its normal limit to 10 or more miles-per-hour slower. This is for your safety and that of the construction workers. If you decide to speed and are pulled over, the fines will be greater than had you been caught speeding on a typical stretch of roadway.
No one expects to go to work and be injured or, worse, killed. This is as true of construction workers as it is of anyone. Use the tips above to ensure that you make it through a construction zone safely.
If you are involved in an accident in North Carolina, reach out to our team. We will review the details of your collision and advise you of your options. You may be legally entitled to compensation for your injuries and property damage. Call today to schedule a free consultation.