April 17, 2020
For more than two decades, the Federal Highway Administration (FHA) has designated one week each spring as National Work Zone Awareness Week; and Monday, April 20, marks the beginning of this year's campaign.
<p>Whether or not you're a professional truck driver, work zones can act as an obstacle on your journey, and when not navigated properly, could result in negative consequences.</p><p class="shortcode-media shortcode-media-rebelmouse-image"> <img class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="0bd8869bbe967f92abfbb812b797190c" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" id="a8525" type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMzExOTc5Ny9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYyNzk5MjU0M30.jpsjCL4aUn4_sIl4u8UTFPHXtkInZPOKLlZKP13NoNI/img.jpg?width=980"/> <small class="image-media media-photo-credit" placeholder="Add Photo Credit...">Photo Credit: The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration</small></p><p>Speeding or distracted driving in and around work zones can put roadside workers, other drivers and yourself in danger. So if you are approaching a work zone on your route, it's important to know what safe driving behavior looks like.<br/></p><p>The FHA offers <a href="https://ops.fhwa.dot.gov/wz/outreach/nwzaw_factsheet_2020/nwzaw_factsheet_2020.pdf" target="_blank">these safe driving tips</a> for all motorists – including truck drivers – when traveling through work zones:</p> <ol class="ee-ol"><li><strong>Be prepared.</strong> Before leaving, find the latest traffic information on your route. If you see a work zone, plan accordingly or reroute to avoid it.</li> <li><strong>Wear your seatbelt.</strong> It could save your life in the event of an accident.</li> <li><strong>Stay focused. </strong>Keep your eyes on the road and anticipate new traffic patterns.</li> <li><strong>Be alert.</strong> Be aware of what's going on around you, including other drivers.</li> <li><strong>Slow down and don't tailgate.</strong> It is important to obey the work zone speed limit and to keep a safe driving distance from the vehicle in front of you.</li> <li><strong>Obey road crews and signs. </strong>Barrels, cones, signs, flaggers and other workers in bright-colored vests are there to help you safely travel through and around the work zone.</li> <li><strong>Watch for workers. </strong>More than 120 workers died in work zone crashes in 2018, according to the <a href="https://ops.fhwa.dot.gov/wz/outreach/nwzaw_factsheet_2020/nwzaw_factsheet_2020.pdf" target="_blank">2017 and 2018 Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries, U.S. Department of Labor and Bureau of Labor Statistics</a>.</li> <li><strong>Share the road.</strong> Many states have <a href="https://www.gopenske.com/blog/lease/safety-tips-move-over-its-the-law?_ga=2.46976741.3324552.1586780947-528216171.1585666174" target="_blank">move-over laws</a> requiring drivers to allow work crews and official vehicles to pass.</li> <li><strong>Use caution around large vehicles.</strong> If you're driving a large truck or around them, remember that larger vehicles have a slower reaction time when it comes to slowing down.</li> <li><strong>Remember, protect everyone.</strong> Everyone's safety is paramount.</li></ol> <p>The FHA announced that this year's theme is "Safe Work Zones for All: Protect Workers. Protect Road Users." For more information on work zone safety, visit the <a href="https://ops.fhwa.dot.gov/wz/outreach/wz_awareness.htm" target="_blank">FHA website</a>.</p><p style="text-align: right;"><em>By "Move Ahead" Staff</em></p>
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