It's that time of year again; roads are closing and undergoing construction. To most drivers, the start of roadwork season means longer commutes, confusing detours and navigating around traffic cones. However, these changes can also raise the risk of suffering a crash.
Although many Kentucky residents may believe that construction workers face the greater danger, data shows that drivers and their passengers accounted for 11 out of 12 total roadwork fatalities in 2017. As a motorist, you can't control road construction, but there are ways that you can stay safe in these particularly dangerous situations.
The top cause of accidents in work zones
The main reasons for crashes in construction are like crashes any other part of the road. Almost half of these accidents involve distracted driving, which is a major concern across the state in any season. Distracted driving has many forms, including eating, texting, applying makeup, talking to passengers and browsing music behind the wheel.
How drivers can prevent a crash
Luckily, drivers can spare themselves serious injury and expensive vehicle repairs by making a point to pay attention on the road. There are a few specific things you can do to stay safe, including:
- Drive slowly through work zones - even when in a rush to work
- Keep one hundred percent of your focus on navigating the road
- Watch for workers and follow directions of flaggers
- Stay calm when frustrated by increased traffic
According to Kentucky's transportation leaders, rear-end accidents are the most common type of crash in construction zones. These accidents can happen because some drivers fail to watch for sudden stops. Others may act on road rage if they believe another driver should zoom through a work site instead of slowing down responsibly. All drivers have a duty to watch out for potential hazards and obey traffic laws.