Work Zone Accidents
Infrastructure is in constant need of repair across the country, and new traffic patterns are being implemented regularly to keep up with growing business trends and recreational activities. Road construction is a sign of fiscal strength; but it brings many hazards to construction workers and all those that travel through construction work zones.
Over 4,000 people have died, and another 200,000 people have been injured in construction work zone accidents on American roadways since 2015. Bodily injury, property damage, and fatalities are common among car, truck, motorcycle, and work vehicle accidents in road construction work zones.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), a road construction work zone accident happens every 5.4 minutes in the United States, with an average of 70 injuries and 12 fatalities reported each week.
The Delaware car accident lawyers at McCann Dillon Jaffe & Lamb, LLC advocate for road construction work zone safety. Injuries sustained in work zone accidents can be catastrophic and require expensive medical intervention, physical and cognitive therapy, and prescription medications. Long recovery periods and lost wages can quickly devastate a family’s financial health.
Causes and Types of Work Zone Accidents
Work zone car accidents happen for a variety of reasons, but most of them can be prevented. The most common causes of serious and sometimes fatal work zone accidents include:
- Speeding through work zone areas
- Heavy traffic during peak rush hour in morning and early evening
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Distracted driving
- Failure to heed warnings for upcoming changes in traffic patterns
- Passing another car or construction vehicle in a work zone
- Crossing over construction barricades
The most common types of serious and fatal construction work zone accidents include:
- Runovers and Backovers: Almost half of all serious and fatal work zone accidents involve a dump truck or other heavy construction vehicle running over or backing over another car, truck, or person. This type of accident often leaves victims with the most devastating injuries.
- Rear End Collisions: Passenger cars, trucks, and motorcycles traveling through a road construction work zone are frequently involved in rear end collisions. Distracted driving, speeding, and failure to obey traffic pattern signs can lead to this type of accident. When one vehicle rear ends another vehicle, the chances for a chain reaction increase in a tight construction work zone.
- Construction and Passenger Vehicle Collisions: When a construction vehicle collides with another car, truck, or motorcycle, the results are often devastating, particularly to the smaller passenger vehicle. Construction vehicles are typically larger and much heavier than passenger vehicles, and cause significant injuries when accidents happen.
- Caught In/Between or Struck-by Objects: Devastating injuries and fatalities occur when passenger vehicles or construction workers are caught in/between objects on a construction site, or struck-by cranes, backhoes, front loaders, and other construction equipment. Work zone barriers are in place to protect these types of accidents from happening.
Stay Safe in Road Construction Work Zones
Most road construction work zone accidents can be prevented with careful attention to safety procedures. To ensure the safety of the construction workers and other vehicles on the road, keep the following in mind:
- Obey speed limits.
- Be prepared for sudden changes in traffic patterns or construction vehicles crossing the roadway.
- Pay attention to and obey construction work zone flaggers and warning signs or traffic cones.
- Leave a safe distance between vehicles to enable quick stops or to adapt to sudden changes in road conditions or traffic patterns.
- Keep up with traffic to avoid traffic jams.
- Keep alert and avoid cell phone use and other forms of distracted driving.
- Plan ahead or leave earlier for work if you know you will travel through an active construction zone.
- Keep headlights on even in daylight hours when traveling through a road construction zone.
Following safety protocols and respecting the road construction work zone warnings and road barriers can prevent many accidents. All drivers on the road and those operating within a work zone are responsible for their safety, as well as all those on the road.
Delaware Car Accident Lawyers at McCann Dillon Jaffe & Lamb, LLC Help Victims of Work Zone Accidents Claim Compensation
If you or someone you know has been injured or killed in a construction work zone accident, you may be entitled to compensation. Call the Delaware car accident lawyers at McCann Dillon Jaffe & Lamb, LLC at 302-888-1221 or contact us online to schedule a consultation today. Our Wilmington and Philadelphia offices serve clients in Dover, Newark, Middletown, Chester County, Delaware County, and throughout Delaware, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey.