The Louisiana Department of Transportation & Development (DOTD) is warning motorists to not be “that” driver during Work Zone Awareness Week, which ends on April 15.
The motorists the DOTD is referencing are distracted drivers; those who can be seen talking on the phone, eating, putting on make-up or texting.
State police, DOTD representatives and their safety partners came together to stress the importance of work zone safety awareness at the DOTD headquarters. During a press conference, the DOTD Secretary noted that each work zone fatality last year was preventable and one life lost is too many. A member of the Highway Safety Commission also repeated the story of a State Trooper who was killed over a decade ago in a work zone. The officer was struck in the work zone, suffered severe burns and succumbed to his injuries.
The DOTD set out 669 cones in the front lawn of the DOTD headquarters in Baton Rouge. Each safety cone represents someone who lost their life in a work zone in 2014. Similar memorials have been erected around the state. Thirteen of the cones represent Louisianans who were killed in a work zone.
Every year, a different theme is chosen. This year’s theme, “Don’t be that Driver,” focuses on distracting drivers and reminds everyone to be alert and prepared for changes in traffic flow in a work zone.
The most common type of work zone crash is a rear-end collision. The use of a cellphone can increase erratic driving by 25 percent and limit the amount of time a driver has to brake and not hit another vehicle. In 2014, distracted driving caused 16 percent of all fatal work zone accidents.
Simien & Simien urges drivers to practice safe driving at all times and never drive while distracted. If you or someone you love has been hurt in a crash caused by a distracted driver, our knowledgeable car accident attorneys can help. You deserve justice and compensation for the injuries you suffered, property damage and wages lost.