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Attorney Zane Cagle

Posted on April 6th, 2015,
by Zane Cagle

Missouri Spring Road Construction: Expect Delays and Excercise Caution

Posted on April 6th, 2015 by Zane Cagle

Roadway Worker SafetySpring time is finally here!!!  Baseball season, trips to the lake and longer days to enjoy the sunshine!

Spring is also the season when many road repair projects are begun or already in full swing by April.

Missouri Department of Transportation has a website that displays current closure, expected delays and possible delays. So when you are planning your travel, you can visit that site and find out just exactly where road construction is occurring and if you will need to re-route your trip.

Road Construction is Supposed to Make Travel Safer

Improving our transportation infrastructure is crucial for our safety. Work must be done to maintain and building roads, highways and interstates. However, these improvements do not come without some inconvenience and in some situations, injuries and death.

Maybe your first thought is now that road construction time is here, you will be inconvenienced because traffic may stall and drag or you may have to plan a new route all together. But the real problem is the number of injuries due to motor vehicle crashes in and around road construction areas and injuries to drivers, vehicle occupants and actual roadway workers.

Road Construction Crash Data

According to 2010 data,  latest research figures) provided by the U.S. Department of Federal Highway Administration, there were 87,606 crashes in work zones in 2010 which is 1.6% of the total number of roadway crashes (5,419,345) in 2010. In that year, .6% were fatal crashes, 30% were injury crashes and 69% were property damage only crashes.

Daytime vs. Nighttime Work

One would think that the number of road construction site fatalities between 2003 and 2007 would occur at night, however, 70 percent of those occurred between the hours of 8 a.m. and 4:59 p.m.

Work Zone Injuries

  • There were 37,476 injuries in work zones in 2010 and this equates to one work zone injury every 14 minutes (96 per day) or about four people injured every hour.
  • More than 20,000 workers are injured in road construction work zones each year.  According to researchers, between 2003-2008, these injuries were caused by:
    • Contact with objects or equipment (35%)
    • Slips, trips, or falls (20%)
    • Overexertion (15%)
    • Transportation incidents (12%)
    • Exposure to harmful substances or environments (5%)

Work Zone Fatalities

Information is compiled from the National Work Zone Safety Information Clearinghouse, FARS Data, and Traffic Safety Facts 2010

  • Work Zone Fatalities: In 2010, there were 514 fatal motor vehicle crashes in work zones, resulting in 576 fatalities.
    • These 576 fatalities equate to one work zone fatalities every 15 hours (1.6 a day)
    • The number of fatalities is a 13.6% decrease from 2009 (667 fatalities), a 20% decrease from 2008 (720 fatalities), a 31% decrease from 2007 (831 fatalities) a 43% decrease since 2006 (1,004 fatalities)
  • Work Zone Fatalities Compared to Overall Highway Fatalities: While highway fatalities overall are declining, the rate of decline in work zone fatalities has been much higher. Overall highway fatalities declined 23% from 2002-2010, while work zone fatalities declined 51% during the same eight year period.

As you drive this spring, keep a lookout for road construction zones. Remember that speed limits are almost always reduced in road construction zones, thus tickets for excessive speeds are frequently much higher.  Also, the speeding through a road construction zone increases the likelihood that you will injure yourself and possibly a road construction worker.  An injury every 15 hours is not an acceptable number.

If you are injured in a car accident, you will need an expert car accident attorney.

Our attorneys represent injured victims of various kinds of motor vehicle accidents.

Call (314) 276-1681 for your free, confidential consultation.