Roadwork zone deaths have been rising nationally, though they are down in Illinois, the result of education campaigns and fewer construction projects in the last few years, officials said. Recent statistics show a total of 765 people died in work zone crashes nationwide in 2016, a 7 percent increase from 712 deaths in 2015, according to the Federal Highway Administration. In Illinois, there were 29 deaths in 2017, down sharply from 2016 and 2015 when there were 44 and 46 deaths, respectively, said Illinois officials, who emphasized that almost all crashes are avoidable.
- A work zone crash occurred once every 5.4 minutes.
- Every day, 70 work zone crashes occurred that resulted in at least one injury.
- Every week, 12 work zone crashes occurred that resulted in at least one fatality.
Do your employees have adequate training to avoid work zone accidents? Illinois Department of Transportation emphasized three areas when releasing the Final Rule on Work Zone Safety and Mobility.
- Policy – Implement a policy for the systematic consideration of management and work zone impacts.
- Process – Develop processes and procedures to implement and sustain work zone policy.
- Project – Develop project level procedures to assess and manage impacts on individual projects.
Illinois’ success in bucking the national work zone safety trend means IDOT is actively issuing citations to companies that have not trained employees to work safely. Illinois has set an example that proper initiative and enforcement can make a difference in workers health and safety. From and employers stanpoint it just makes sense to train employees promote workplace safety and financial sense to avoid regulatory fines.
Work zone construction is highly visible and makes an easy target for inspectors to identify unsafe practices. Think about it – it’s important that we keep our employees safe at work, and part of the way we do so is by training them on what they need to know about to do their job safely. And, you never know, such training
could potentially keep a ‘bad day at the office’ from becoming the ‘last’ day at the office.
To schedule a Flagger Course and/or questions about this brief, contact your Vista Safety Representative:
Roger M. Paveza, CRIS President
Kyle Cochran, CSP Sr. Vice President
Eric A. White, CHST, CRIS Sr. Vice President
Muhummad Starks Safety Consultant
Any information and/or recommendations contained herein have been compiled from sources believed to be reliable and represent the best current opinion on the subject. No warranty, guarantee, or representation is made by Vista Safety Consulting, LLC as to the absolute correctness or sufficiency of any information contained herein. This information is advisory and designed to assist clients with the implementation, management, and control of their own safety program and activities. Vista Safety Consulting, LLC assumes no responsibility for the implementation, correction, or control of any conditions or recommendations identified herein, and is thereby not liable for any health and safety violation(s) and/or injuries on a site.