The summer and fall months typically bring high levels of traffic to highways across the country. Complicating matters is the fact that this time of the year is one of most common for roadwork.
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration, fatal work zone crashes are most likely to occur in summer and fall. Every year, more than 200,000 people are injured in work zone accidents. This is in addition to approximately 4,400 fatalities.
Despite the dangers, you may find yourself regularly driving through active work zones. Here are five tips for maintaining your safety:
- Stay alert: You should be on high alert when traveling through a work zone. From shifting lanes to workers on the side of the road, there are many distractions and potential hazards.
- Turn on your headlights: Not only does this make it easier for you to see the road ahead, but it also helps others, such as construction workers, spot and track your vehicle.
- Pay attention to the signs: Work zones are typically accompanied by various signs, such as those warning you of shifting lanes, overheard power lines or changes in the speed limit.
- Leave more space: When traffic slows, it’s natural to drive close to the vehicle in front of yours. Doing so gives you less time to stop in the event of an emergency.
- Be careful when changing lanes: The first thing you should do is take note of whether you’re permitted to change lanes. Many works zones are accompanied by a solid lane line, so you’re required by law to stay where you are for the time being. If you have to change lanes, do so with extreme caution.
Even if you follow these tips, there’s no guarantee of your safety. Other drivers may not be as cautious, which increases the likelihood of an accident.
If you’re injured in a work zone traffic accident, move to safety and call 911. Administer first aid while waiting for paramedics, and then let them take over your care upon arrival.
When possible, contact your insurance company and learn more about your options for seeking compensation from the negligent party.
Visit our website for additional safe driving tips, as well as how to protect your legal rights after an accident.