JUL
15
2015
Our Ridgeland car accident lawyers present tips to avoid accidents in work zones.

It’s summer and that means it’s prime season for road crews to be repairing and repaving roads in Mississippi. Whether you are travelling on Interstate 55, Interstate 20, I-220 or another roadway, you are likely to run into slowed traffic caused by road work activity at some point.

As a driver, you need to be alert to the many hazards that you may encounter in a highway work zone to avoid accidents.

Converging traffic, sudden lane changes, narrowed lanes, vehicles moving at different speeds, road workers working in close proximity to passing motorists, and distracted drivers are all potential hazards in work zones. It’s no wonder there are so many accidents.

Work zones often present drivers with unfamiliar traffic patterns, causing some drivers to brake unexpectedly. The shoulders may be closed, squeezing vehicles closer together.

Too many drivers disregard the orange cones and warning signs of a work zone. They fail to anticipate the hazards ahead and drive too fast for the road conditions and cause collisions. Drivers may become distracted by the work activity along the road and fail to notice that the vehicle in front has come to a complete stop—until it’s too late to avoid an accident.

According to the Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT), speeding is the major cause of collisions in work zones, and the most common type of crash is a rear end collision.

In some cases, traffic is travelling in both directions on roads which are normally one way. Be alert for oncoming traffic.

During the past five years, more than 4,400 people have been killed nationwide and 200,000 injured in work zone crashes, according to the Federal Highway Administration (FHA).

It may surprise you to learn that 85 to 90 percent of the people killed in work zone accidents are motorists and their passengers, the Mississippi DOT says.

Fatal work zone collisions occur most frequently in the summer and fall, the FHA says.

It’s important to slow down and allow more space between your vehicle and the vehicle ahead of you.

Tips to Avoid Accidents in Work Zones

  • Focus your attention on the road and minimize distractions such as changing the radio, talking on a mobile phone or eating.
  • Pay attention to reduced speed limits in work zones. Fines for speeding in work zones may cost you twice as much as a typical speeding ticket.
  • Watch brake lights on vehicles ahead of you.
  • Be aware that traffic lane patterns can change from one day to the next.
  • Give the driver ahead of you plenty of space. Don’t follow too close. Adequate distance is essential to avoid rear end collisions.
  • Merge into the proper lane well ahead of the lane closure.
  • Obey instructions and hand signals from flaggers if they are directing traffic.
  • Expect delays and allow yourself extra time to arrive on schedule without feeling rushed.
  • Be patient and anticipate the unexpected.
  • Be mindful that the highway to the future is always under construction and you want to arrive there safely so slow down.

Contact Mississippi Car Accident Lawyer

If you have been injured in work zone accident in Mississippi caused by another driver, talk to a car accident lawyer who will review your legal options for obtaining compensation.

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