Why It’s Crucial to Follow the Signs in a Road Work Zone
Over the decades, there have been quite a few accidents during road construction projects. While most drivers keep an eye on the road and slow down when there’s roadwork going on, there are always going to be drivers who aren’t paying attention or simply decide not to obey the rules. This is why one of the most important things you can do in terms of road safety during highway construction is to have the right traffic signs, signals, and other equipment to keep drivers aware.
You want drivers to see your construction zone from a distance, so they can slow down before it becomes dangerous to hit the brakes. This starts with posting message signs down the road from the construction area, preferably on both sides. Traffic signals can be used to make sure only one lane goes at a time. Little signs and signals like these can make a huge difference when it comes to road construction safety; that is, as long as people follow them. When you approach a road construction zone as a driver, it’s your responsibility to slow down, follow what the signs say and focus on keeping road workers safe.
Perhaps the most important reason to pay attention to signs on the road is the fact that they can give you advanced warning of what’s to come. It takes a while to slow a car down, especially if you’re in a large truck or SUV that’s barreling down the highway. The sooner you know there’s roadwork ahead, the sooner you can slow down and the easier it’s going to be to stop.
These advanced warnings can also alert drivers to roadwork that might lead them to change their route. If you’re in a hurry to get somewhere, you might not be able to wait for a flagger to wave you through a construction zone. In a lot of cases, you can actually go around a construction site by taking a different route, which saves you time and keeps workers safe since they have to deal with less traffic. If you see message signs warning of roadwork ahead, make sure you keep your eyes peeled for signs of construction.
Following Speed Limits
Just because you’re used to a certain speed limit on a road doesn’t mean that speed limit is going to be the same during road construction. As a matter of fact, speed limits are significantly lower when there’s construction going on since workers are at risk of being struck by drivers who are driving too fast through a construction zone.
The most important reason to follow speed limits is to keep others safe. These speed limits don’t exist to inconvenience you or take all the fun out of driving; they’re simply a way to make sure people don’t drive dangerously fast. This is particularly important on a road construction site because drivers are often on their way to work or the store and don’t want to be bothered with flaggers. If you see a speed limit sign posted on a job site, please follow it.
It’s also important to note that a lot of road construction zones will use speed signs that also feature a radar. In addition to letting you know what the speed limit is, these signs also display your speed as you pass. This gives you a better idea of how fast you’re going and whether you should slow down as you approach the construction site.
Oftentimes, getting through a construction zone means changing lanes and waiting for the flow of traffic to let you through. While this isn’t a problem most of the time, last-second lane changes can put you, other drivers and road construction workers in danger. The best way to avoid these last-second lane changes is to read signs as soon as you can see them. The quicker you read a sign, the faster you can take action to make sure you’re following what the sign says.
In some cases, failure to change lanes could lead to a collision with signs and traffic signals or even another vehicle. When you’re approaching a road construction zone, it’s important to take heed of any signs and do your best to drive carefully.
When you don’t know what’s going on around you, it can be easy to get distracted while driving. Reading signs while you drive might seem like a good way to distract yourself, but it’s actually a great way to make sure you don’t get distracted when you’re driving through a road construction zone. It’s important to understand the rules of the road, but you don’t want to be learning those rules while trying to navigate past flaggers and other construction workers. Take some time to read any signs you can see while you’re at a standstill, that way you know what to do when you move up in line and drive through the construction site.