The kids are out of school, the sun is high, the weather is perfect, and you’re ready for a road trip. Summer is also the time for road construction projects and with that comes potential risks. While an inconvenience, road construction and maintenance is necessary to improve roads for the safety of the traveling public.
Before you hit the road, check out our top five tips to drive safely through construction zones with ease.
- Reduce Your Speed – Normal speed limits may be reduced, traffic lanes may be changed and people and vehicles may be working on or near the road. A truck traveling at 60 mph travels 88 feet per second. If you’re going 60 and you pass a sign that says “Road Work 1,500 feet,” you’ll be in that work zone in 17 seconds.
- Keep a Safe Distance – Keep a safe distance between your vehicle and traffic barriers, construction equipment and construction workers. The most common crash in a highway work zone is the rear-end collision. Remember to leave seven seconds of braking distance between you and the vehicle in front of you. Most rear-end accidents occur because of following too close and traveling too fast for conditions.
- Pay Attention to the Signage – Signage is generally posted in advance of road construction projects. It’s important to merge as soon as safely possible. If everyone cooperates, traffic moves more quickly and efficiently through the jobsite.
- Comply with the directions given by the flagger – Stay alert and be prepared to obey the flagger’s directions. In a construction zone, a flagger has the same authority as a regulatory sign, so you can be cited for disobeying his or her directions.
- Expect Delays – Highway agencies use many different ways to inform motorists about the location and duration of major work zones. Often, the agencies will suggest a detour to help you avoid the work zone entirely. Plan ahead, stay alert and stay safe so you get to your destination safely.
Each state has numerous construction sites in progress. For up to date road construction information, check your states Department of Transportation website. Check out the links below:
- Arizona: https://www.azdot.gov/projects/other-restrictions/road-restrictions
- Colorado: https://www.codot.gov/travel
- Nevada: http://www.nvroads.com/
- New Mexico: http://www.nmroads.com/mapIndex.html?
Safe travels from the Sunland family to yours!