Work zones are a common site throughout Chicago and the rest of the state. A necessary nuisance, they keep the roads safe and strong to withstand the large number of vehicles that use the state’s roadways. However, many drivers fail to slow down and take precautions to avoid car accidents when they enter a work zone, an act that often has deadly consequences for both drivers and workers.
Deadly crashes in Texas
The Houston Chronicle reports that a severe accident involving a truck in a work zone recently occurred in Texas. The driver of the truck allegedly veered out of normal traveling lanes and struck a concrete barrier. The crash was so severe, the driver died as a result of his car accident injuries. No one else was hurt in the accident.
Another construction site accident recently occurred in North Carolina. Better Roads reports that the state’s Highway Patrol closed down Interstate 40 for several hours after a pickup truck failed to yield in a work zone and hit three workers who were working on a paving project at an interchange. One worker, a young husband and father with two children, died before he reached the hospital. The condition of the other two workers was not made public. Charges are currently pending against the motorist who caused the fatal crash.
Work zone fatalities and injuries
According to the Federal Highway Administration, 87,606 crashes occurred in the nation’s work zones in 2010. Of these crashes, 30 percent resulted in injury and 69 percent reported only property damage. That year 514 fatal accidents occurred in work zones, killing a total of 576 people. According to the Illinois Department of Transportation Illinois saw similar numbers to the national average in 2013 with 31 percent of crashes resulting in injury and 24 fatalities.
The Texas Department of Transportation reports that in 2013, 84 percent of work zone fatalities were motorists, while only 16 percent were workers or pedestrians. Most of these accidents can be attributed to speeding in work zones and distracted driving. Additionally, as much as 42 percent of total fatal crashes in work areas can be attributed to drug and alcohol use or distracted driving. Most distracted drivers in these cases are preoccupied with their cell phones instead of watching for changes in the road.
Those who have been injured by another driver’s negligent behavior in a work zone can contact a Chicago personal injury attorney for help. An attorney can help car accident victims through the claims process and negotiations so those who are injured can focus on healing and rebuilding their lives.