Hall:"Drivers Have to be Aware"

By: Stan Torgerson
By: Stan Torgerson

Central District Transportation Commissioner Dick Hall spoke to the Meridian Kiwanis Club Wednesday. He later commented on the rash of accidents at interstate construction sites such as those in our area.

"We've had people lose legs. We've had employees lose their life because of people not paying attention," said Hall. "Whether it's one sign or 50 signs, they ought to read the sign and do what it says to do and slow down and watch what they're doing."

Hall said exceeding the speed limit and driving too fast for the current conditions, especially contributes to highway mishaps.

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Work Zone Facts

  • Over the last five years the number of persons killed in motor vehicle crashes in work zones has gone from a high of 828 in 1994 to a low of 693 in 1997, for an average of 760 fatalities per year.

  • In 1998, 772 fatalities resulted from motor vehicle crashes in work zones of which 222 resulted from large truck crashes.

  • On average from 1994 to 1998, 16 percent of the fatalities resulting from crashes in work zones were non-motorists (pedestrians and bicyclists).

  • Approximately 39,000 people were injured as a result of motor vehicle crashes in work zones.

  • Approximately 3,000 people were injured in large truck work zone crashes in 1998.

  • In 1998, more than half of all work zone crashes occurred during the day, while about three-quarters of fatal large truck work zone crashes occurred during the day.

  • Almost three times as many work zone crashes occurred on weekdays compared to weekends.

  • Fatal work zone crashes, regardless of whether a large truck was involved or not, occurred most often in the summer and the fall.

  • The percentage of fatal work zone crashes occurring on urban interstates was more than twice the percentage of all fatal crashes occurring on urban intersections (14 percent compared to six percent).

  • For fatal large truck crashes, the percentage of work zone crashes occurring on urban interstates was twice as high compared to all fatal truck crashes (20 percent vs. 10 percent).

  • The majority of fatal work zone crashes for all vehicles and large trucks occurred on roads with speed limits of 55 miles per hour or greater (59 percent and 71 percent, respectively).

Source: www.usdot.gov (US Department of Transportation Web site) contributed to this report.

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