In recognition of National Work Zone Awareness Week, April 9-13, the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) reminds drivers to use caution when driving through work zones. In 2017, work zone fatalities in Texas increased 9 percent over the previous year, resulting in 199 deaths and 813 serious injuries. With 4 percent of those fatalities being road crew workers, the remaining 96 percent was motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists.
Houstonians should be on the lookout for displays around town helping to raise awareness and remind drivers to stay alert. TxDOT will be at City Hall on Wednesday and the Art Car Parade Sneak Peek on Thursday to educate drivers about the importance of slowing down and avoiding distractions in work zones.
There are more than 2,500 active TxDOT work zones at any given time. In 2017, there were 1,114 work zone crashes in Houston, resulting in 11 fatalities. The leading causes of statewide work zone crashes – speeding and driver inattention – are entirely preventable. Fines in work zones double when workers are present and can cost up to $2,000.
“Roadside crews often work only a few feet from fast-moving traffic,” Bass said. “Driver vigilance is paramount to ensuring the safety of everyone in the work zone. We urge anyone driving through a work zone to minimize distractions, give their full attention to the road and be prepared to slow down or stop on short notice. Doing so helps ensure everyone – motorists and work crews – gets home safely to their loved ones.”
As part of its ongoing Work Zone Awareness campaign, TxDOT also reminds drivers of the Move Over/Slow Down law, which requires drivers to move over or slow down when approaching TxDOT crews, law enforcement, emergency vehicles or tow trucks stopped on the roadside or shoulder with flashing blue or amber lights.
For media inquiries, contact Emily Black at: 713-802-5022 or Emily.Black@txdot.gov.
The information contained in this report represents reportable data collected from the Texas Peace Officer's Crash Report (CR-3). This information was received and processed by the department as of Feb. 26, 2018.