Work Zone Safety Awareness Week highlights costs of dangerous driving

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (April 7,2014) — Warm weather causes spring flowers to pop up and also marks the beginning of road construction season. Gov. Mike Pence declared this week Work Zone Safety Awareness Week.

INDOT is investing nearly $800 million in projects this year around the state. Unfortunately, said Nathan Riggs with INDOT, there are fatalities from crashes in work zones nearly every year.

Just this weekend a state highway worker was injured in a crash when a semi-truck driver failed to yield and crashed into the INDOT truck in Lafayette. The worker was sent to the hospital.

Riggs said the campaign for work zone safety isn’t just to protect workers, it’s to protect drivers, too. Last year, 13 motorists were killed and more than 450 were injured in Indiana highway work zone crashes.

This year’s national work zone safety campaign is “Work Zone Speeding: a Costly Mistake.” Fines for speeding can be as high as $1,000 in a work zone and up to $5,000 for driving recklessly.

In Indiana, drivers may notice displays on state highways honoring fallen workers.

“We put signs up at all of our work zones warning motorists that they could face fines for speeding or driving recklessly through work zones or injuring or killing a worker. But the greatest cost is that, is hurting somebody else,” said Riggs.

Hoosiers are encouraged to wear orange to support Work Zone Safety Awareness Week and to brush up on rules in construction zones by visiting the website.

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