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"Protecting workers should absolutely be a priority, but drivers should know that they too are at higher risk for crashing in a construction zone."
WILLIAMSPORT, PA, January 24, 2018 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Twenty deaths, 1,250 injuries and 1,877 crashes - that's the average yearly price Pennsylvanians pay for reckless driving in construction zones. Williamsport personal injury attorney Cliff Rieders of Rieders, Travis, Humphrey, Waters & Dohrmann said these numbers are unacceptable.
"The statistics speak for themselves," Rieders said. "But they also fall short in illustrating how devastating these crashes can be. For every life lost and for every debilitating injury, there are ripple effects that impact families, workplaces and taxpayers."
Rieders said that the state has been taking steps to improve road safety around construction zones, along with other areas of concern. He said that proposed legislation to reduce speeding, safety awareness campaigns and smarter technology are all causes for optimism.
A bipartisan bill being considered by Pennsylvania lawmakers calls for a pilot program for automatic enforcement of speed limits in construction zones through the use of cameras. Speeders would be fined $100 for a violation. Similar programs have been successful in Maryland.
PennDOT created the Just Drive: Work Zone Smart video to educate younger drivers about the dangers of driving recklessly in speed zones. Rieders said that technology like adaptive traffic signals planned for the Pittsburgh area could also have a tangential effect on construction zone safety by alleviating congestion on Pennsylvania roads.
"Our state is trying to make progress on this issue," Rieders said. "There's much work to be done, but it is well worth our efforts."
Rieders said that the dangers of reckless driving in construction zones should be a concern for all drivers and not just workers in these zones.
"Four out of five construction zone deaths are drivers or other vehicle passengers," Rieders said. "Protecting workers should absolutely be a priority, but drivers should know that they too are at higher risk for crashing in a construction zone."
Fines for speeding, drunk driving and reckless driving in a Pennsylvania construction zone are currently double that of non-work zone fines. Punishments for vehicular homicide and aggravated assault are also more severe when they occur in a work zone.
Rieders said that drivers must also do their part to make construction zones safer for everyone.
"It's important to be patient, slow down, avoid tailgating and follow the signs and signals in zones," Rieders said.
About Rieders, Travis, Humphrey, Waters & Dohrmann:
Rieders, Travis, Humphrey, Waters & Dohrmann is a full-service law firm based in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. Learn more about the firm by calling 800-326-9259 or visiting their website http://www.riederstravis.com/
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