Campaign calling for Safe Driving in Pennsylvania Work Zones

People who work for PennDOT and the Pennsylvania Turnpike asked drivers to be more careful and alert in and around work zones across the Commonwealth on Monday, as part of National Work Zone Awareness Week.

At a news gathering outside the statehouse, Mike Carroll, secretary of PennDOT, told drivers to pay attention as they approach work zones and not do anything distracting like use their phones.

“Please pick the safe option. He told them, “I know everyone is in a hurry and wants to get where they’re going quickly. But please slow down in work zones.”

To honor workers who died in work zones, PennDOT and the PA Turnpike Commission put up cones and crosses along the Soldiers & Sailors Grove at the Capitol. These have helmets, safety belts, and the names of workers who died on them.

PennDOT says that since 1970, 90% of its staff has died on Pennsylvania’s roads. Since 1940, 45 miles have been taken off the PA Turnpike.

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It is estimated that more than 1,200 accidents happened in work zones in 2023, killing 22 people. Most of those killed were drivers. Asst. County Manager for Dauphin County for PennDOT Chris Baynham said he was hit from behind years ago and is thankful he wasn’t killed.

“I’m lucky to be able to talk about it. “But I just want my guys and everyone else to go home, see their families, and live another day,” he said.

To make things safer, PennDOT and the PA Turnpike Commission have started putting speed cameras in work zones. People who break the law by going over the speed limit in places where it’s slower because of maintenance or construction are given tickets.

The PA Turnpike’s Zachary Seidel said that people should know that the men and women who work in work zones are just like them and want to get home to their families at the end of the day.

“People out on the roads should think about if that was their family members or significant others out on the road and how they would want them to be safe,” he added.

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