It’s impossible to drive through Indiana these days without seeing orange barrels all over the state. Commuters are more often than not met with road and lane closures, some of which change daily.

Last year, there were more than 1,500 construction zone crashes in Indiana, with five fatalities reported in those incidents. Additionally, 762 people were killed in work zone crashes across the United States last year. Even for the accidents that are not fatal, 73% result in damage to one or more automobiles. Around 70% of work zone crashes occur during daytime hours.

To protect yourself, your loved ones, construction workers and other drivers, here are some important tips to make sure you drive safely in and around roadway construction zones:

• Look for orange diamonds. Many of these signs will be placed near the roadway well before the actual construction zone to warn drivers. As soon as you see a “work zone ahead” sign, reduce your speed and be on the lookout for workers, machinery, and obstacles.
• Expect the unexpected in roadway construction zones. Normal speed limits will probably be reduced, traffic lanes may be changed so that roads can be repaired, and people and vehicles may be working on or near the road.
• Slow down, be alert and pay attention to the signs. Also always pay attention to the speed limit and double the following distance to allow more time to stop or safely react in case of an emergency.
• Comply with the directions given by the flagger and drive defensively. Stay alert and be prepared to obey the flagger’s directions. In a construction zone, a flagger has the same authority as a regulatory sign, so you can be cited for disobeying his or her directions. Also keep a safe distance between your vehicle and traffic barriers, construction equipment and construction workers.

If you or a loved one have been affected by an accident or death, contact an experienced personal injury attorney at Hurst Limontes, LLC. We have decades of combined experience fighting for our clients in any number of personal injury claims. Call 317-636-0808 or email us for a FREE and confidential consultation.