The Illinois Department of Transportation recently joined efforts with another state to highlight the dangers constructions workers face when working on interstates and highways. Although work zones are typically identified through cones, flashing lights and other early warnings, many drivers fail to take precautionary actions when passing by. While some workers survive negligent drivers, not everyone gets to go home after a construction accident.
During the annual campaign put on by the Illinois Department of Transportation state officials, injured workers and their loved ones urge drivers to pay attention in work zones by highlighting the realities of what can happen if they do not. In 2012, a 38-year-old construction worker was killed while working on I-64 when a driver caused a devastating accident. Three other workers were injured in that same incident, and police determined that the driver had been operating the vehicle while on a prescription for sleeping medication.
Officials from the Missouri DOT also helped out with the campaign. The family of a 55-year-old construction worker killed on Highway 100 also stood in solidarity with officials and other victims. His daughter hoped that drivers would continue to honor the memory of her father — one of nine people killed in work zone that year — by exercising caution in work zones.
Performing routine maintenance and new construction in highway work zones can be especially dangerous. Not only must works be cautious of construction equipment and ensuring that all safety protocols are followed, but they must do all of this while surrounded by fast-moving motor vehicles. Sadly, some drivers in Illinois fail to respect the need for caution in these work zones. For grieving families who have lost a loved one in a construction accident, workers’ compensation can provide temporary death benefits that allow families to address the financial burdens often left behind.
Source: stltoday.com, “Families of those killed in work zones join appeal for road safety“, Leah Thorsen, April 14, 2016