In California, the dangers faced by construction workers in road work zones are pronounced. The number of deaths in road construction accidents is on the rise nationally. This has led to local initiatives to try to increase safety for those who work in this dangerous area.
An average of 123 workers each year are killed in road work zones. Most of these accidents result from intrusions into the work zone when a motorist leaves the road and enters the work zone. Workers are also at risk of being killed and injured by construction equipment in the work zone.
There are a number of reasons why risks to workers have increased. One of the main reasons is the spike in distracted driving as motorists use devices behind the wheel. They may not notice that there is even a work zone, or they may be trying to text while they are driving through it. Road work zones require a higher level of alertness because of the change in the traffic patterns and the narrower lanes.
Employers must also consider increasing the ways in which they protect employees from the dangers. One way to help employees is by giving them brighter clothes that make it easier for them to be spotted. The construction site could also use more barriers to keep workers safer behind them and insulated from traffic.
Workers who are injured in a construction work zone could have a claim for workers’ compensation or even a possible lawsuit against a driver if they were struck. Those who suffer workplace injuries may be eligible for compensation so that they are not forced to bear the cost of an injury that was someone else’s fault. A lawyer may help their client through the process to be compensated for their injury.