This April, transportation safety authorities in Georgia conducted a campaign drawing attention to the high risks facing construction workers in work zones. It’s also equally important for truck drivers to be aware of these risks.
Large trucks are involved in a significant percentage of the total number of accidents that occur in American work zones every year. The last week of April this year was commemorated as National Work Zone Awareness Week to draw awareness to the special risks facing construction workers working in these zones. In 2019, which is the last year for which data on these types of accidents is available, there were a total of 842 accident deaths occurring in work zones across the United states. That was a significant increase from the 757 fatalities in work zones that occurred in 2018.
Truck accidents account for a significant percentage of these types of accidents. While truck accidents constitute approximately 5% of all vehicular traffic, they are involved in a staggering 33% of all accidents that occur in work zones. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is specifically calling on commercial truck drivers to look out for construction workers in work zones, and follow all safety protocols while driving through these zones.
The need for such awareness campaigns is especially acute in Georgia which is one of the states that records the maximum number of work zone accidents involving large commercial trucks every year. In fact, messages calling on drivers to look out for work zones and drive safely through them were being broadcast across the state through the last week of April.
Many of the commercial truck accidents that occur in work zones are a result of driver failure to slow down speeds in time while driving through work zones. Truck drivers must look out for warning signs that are typically posted well before the beginning of the work zone and adjust their speeds accordingly. A commercial truck takes a much longer time to come to a complete stop, compared to a passenger vehicle and this delay could be crucial when it involves a work zone with dozens of pedestrian workers, construction equipment and debris lying around. Commercial trucks seem to have a disproportionate representation in fatal work zone accident data. Highway construction workers provide an essential service to Georgians, ensuring that our highways are repaired and maintained for us to use safely. The least they can expect for their efforts is safety as they are doing their work.
The Atlanta trucking accident attorneys at the Katz Personal Injury Lawyers represent persons who are injured in truck accidents in the metro Atlanta region and across Georgia. If you or a loved one have been injured in a truck accident, talk to an Atlanta truck accident lawyer, and determine your legal options for a claim for damages. An accident must cover damages not just for immediate medical expenses and other costs, but also for all of the long-term medical expenses that you can be expected to incur, as well as modifications to your home and environment that may become necessary.