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Work zones are treacherous for trucks

September 18, 2015

A truck is involved in one in four fatal crashes in work zones in the U.S. every year, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. In 2011, there were 635 fatal large truck crashes, of which 174 occurred in work zones. Perpetual highway and bridge repair in Kentucky and across travel corridors throughout the U.S., along with other construction and utility work, create dangerous driving conditions for large trucks.


Highway workers are particularly vulnerable to injury and death when a truck loses control and crashes into a construction site. Safety measures are often inadequate to provide sufficient protection from impact or a rollover. When a work zone is inadequately marked, a truck travelling at highway speeds is a danger to both oncoming traffic and to vehicles in adjacent lanes.


The deterioration of highway conditions across the country has resulted in roadways that inhibit safe driving. Commercial trucks must often navigate long, narrow stretches with little to guide them through the maze of construction materials and detours. The Truck Safety Coalition suggests the following actions to limit traffic fatalities from truck accidents in work zones:


  •        Improved warning techniques such as in-lane rumble strips and electronic signs
  •        Better road to vehicle communication
  •        Stronger physical barriers between work area and traffic
  •        Higher penalties for traffic violations, such as speeding, within work zones


A work zone is a disruption that requires drivers to pay extra attention to safe driving practices. When large trucks fail to observe precautions in places where the highway is under construction, catastrophic accidents can occur.