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Prevent work zone-related incidents

Photo: Missouri Department of Transportation Flickr

National Work Zone Awareness Week is April 11-15. This year’s theme is “Work zones are a sign to slow down.”

In 2019, 762 fatal crashes occurred in work zones, resulting in 842 deaths – 135 of which were workers, according to data provided by

Help stay safe when stationed in a work zone. CPWR – The Center for Construction Research and Training has tips:

  • Be aware of your surroundings at all times.
  • Make eye contact with the operator, flagger or spotter before walking in front of or behind a vehicle in a work zone.
  • Stay where other workers can clearly see you.
  • Obey any posted safety signs.
  • Listen for horns and back-up alarms.
  • Wear high-visibility clothing.
  • Look out for your fellow workers.

Are you operating a vehicle in a work zone? CPWR has tips for you, too:

  • Avoid backing up whenever possible. Park so you can pull in and out by driving forward.
  • Make sure mirrors are clean and positioned properly.
  • Obey posted signs.
  • Follow designated travel routes.
  • Turn off distracting devices.
  • Check blind spots before moving.
  • Follow spotter and flagger directions. Stop if you lose sight of the spotter.
  • Wear your seat belt.
  • Always use the back-up alarm or beep your horn twice before reversing.
  • Don’t back up more than 100 feet before stopping and checking that the area is still clear.
  • Keep windows open so you can see and hear workers and others nearby.

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