Drive like all Workers in Traffic Work Zones are your Family

April is “Work Zone Safety Awareness,” and Southwest Florida continues to see monumental growth in roadway construction—currently, approximately 800,000 people consider Lee County to be their home. Models are predicting that to double up to 1.5 million by 2060. These numbers alone are a ‘primary driver’ for the constant roadway construction in the surrounding area. Additionally, we cannot forget that SWFL residents experienced the devastating wrath of Hurricane Ian in 2022 and Hurricane Irma in 2017, resulting in multiple roadways and bridges sustaining damage. This only adds to the number of workers and foot traffic alongside roads resulting in commuting delays and aggressive driving. Because of this, it is imperative that work zone safety laws are adhered to ensure that pedestrians and construction crews remain safe. Drivers must slow down in work areas, reminding themselves that roadway expansions and road repairs can save lives and is an important improvement process. Imagine working alongside of a road with drivers speeding, distracted, or using their cell phones. Roadways are updated, maintained, and reconstructed, dependent on traffic flow and safety designs. Additional routes are added measures for safety to create efficient traffic flow for everyone traveling the roadways. When workers are driving or working alongside large tractors, bulldozers, rollers, and other heavy machinery, work conditions can become extremely dangerous.

  • Plan, when possible, research driving routes, check for road construction, if possible, choose another route
  • Be patient, reduce your speed, pay attention to constructions signs and signals, and be prepared to stop in work
    zones
  • Avoid distractions! Remain focused! Distractions come in many forms: cell phones, handheld or hands-free, music,
    navigation systems, and other non–driving tasks. A texting driver is 23 times more likely to crash. Sending or
    reading a text can divert eyes from the road for about 4.6 seconds. At 55 mph, that is like driving with closed
    eyes for the distance of a football field
  • Obey the posted speed limit
  • Do not tailgate other drivers
  • Avoid aggressive driving
  • Lane changes should be avoided and only completed when pavement markings or signs indicate it is safe to do so
    and traffic conditions permit
  • Be prepared to pay close attention to sudden traffic pattern changes
  • Use turn signals and headlights.

Florida’s New STATE law makes texting while driving a primary offense and prohibits drivers from holding cell phones in work and school zones. First-time offenders caught using their phone outside of a work zone will face a $116 fine.

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