May is Oregon’s “Transportation Safety Awareness” month. Traditionally, the summer months are when the majority of Oregon roads get repaired, and there is an increase in work zones for all drivers to navigate. Unfortunately, there is also an increase in the amount of accidents involving drivers and work zones.
Most work zone injuries are avoidable. Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) crash statistics show that the main causes of crashes in work zones are inattention, speeding, and driving too fast for conditions. In fact, almost half of all contractors report crashes in their work zones, with four out of five work zone fatalities being drivers or passengers of vehicles. An average of nine fatalities occur in work zones throughout Oregon each year.
ODOT urges travelers to take a couple of actions to protect themselves, their passengers, and construction workers:
- Slow down and expect delays as you approach a work zone: It may be your life you save.
- Inattention is the biggest cause of work zone crashes. Don’t let it be you!
- We’re doing more to protect workers and you: Help us! Respect the zone: Please slow down and pay attention as you approach and pass through a work zone.