How to Drive Safely in Work Zones

by Staff | April 19th, 2021

Thousands of work zone crashes occur each year in California, and more than 700 Americans are killed in these crashes annually. In most cases, those deaths are motorists. But approximately 15% of those deaths are work zone workers.

Work zones are a common fixture on California’s roads, so it’s important we take caution when driving through them, both for our safety and that of workers. Here are a few crucial safety tips for the next time you drive through a work zone.

Plan Your Route Wisely

If you know that your route includes a work zone, you can either leave earlier than usual or find an alternate route. Often, navigational apps or devices can show you whether there are significant delays on your route so you can plan accordingly.

Take Speed Limits Seriously

Speeding contributes to roughly 29% of work zone accidents. Speed limits are typically lower in work zones, and fines can be greater than in non-work zones. Whenever you see a speed limit posted in a work zone, do not exceed it, even if you don’t immediately see workers around your car.

Leave Adequate Space Between Yourself and Others

Drivers typically have less room in work zones than in normal traffic, so it’s important to leave adequate space between your vehicle and those in front of you. Approximately one-quarter of all fatal work zone crashes involve rear-end collisions, so be prepared for sudden stops.

If Possible, Change Lanes to Create Distance from Workers

If you notice workers near your lane, shift lanes whenever possible. If you’re on a single-lane road or you can’t shift lanes, slow down and keep as great a distance from workers as possible without veering outside your lane.

Be Especially Careful Around Buses and Large Trucks

Buses and large trucks are even more difficult to maneuver in work zones than passenger vehicles. Avoid making any sudden lane shifts in front of these large vehicles.

Follow Signs Posted by Road Crews

Most road crews post warning signs or place barrels and cones that tell drivers where they should drive. Obey these signs and make sure to drive only in designated areas.

Avoid Distraction at All Costs

Drivers should always strive to be alert and focused solely on the task of driving, but it’s doubly important when driving in work zones. Keep conversations with passengers or on hands-free devices to a minimum. Make sure you keep your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road ahead throughout the entire time you’re driving through a work zone.

If You’re Injured by a Negligent Driver, You Have Options

Whether you’re working or driving in a work zone, you have legal rights to compensation when you’re injured by a negligent driver. At Berg Injury Lawyers, we have years of experience standing up for the rights of injured Californians.

If you’re considering your legal options, contact our California car accident lawyers to schedule a free consultation with our team. Tell us about the details of your case, and we can help you explore ways in which you can get the compensation you deserve for the costs of the injuries you’ve suffered.