Monday, June 22, 2015

Construction zone safety: please slow down!

This summer, watch for some fresh, young faces out on the roads reminding Calgarians to slow down around work sites.  A partnership between Roads and Water Services has once again revised the popular “Please Slow Down - My Dad (or Mom) Works Here” campaign. The campaign features the children and grandchildren of Water Services and Roads employees and is aimed at reminding Calgarians that the people working out in the construction zones have families that they want to get home safely to at the end of the day.

Put yourself in their shoes.

Imagine sitting in your cubicle with cars whizzing by perilously close to your work space and so fast that you can feel the tailwind.  Well, that’s just what many of our employees in the field experience every day when they are out working on the roadway.

“The only protection that we have are those signs and the cones, it’s all that separates our workers and the traffic,” says Marco Nicoletti, Roads Foreman. Marco’s son (pictured) and daughter are part of the 2015 “My Dad Works Here” Construction Zone Safety campaign, and he reminds motorists, “I’m always letting my guys know to keep their heads on a swivel. Sometimes cars can enter a zone which has been marked off limits, it's very dangerous.”

With 1200 construction locations planned for Roads alone in 2015, commuters and construction are sure to meet. Many employees working on the street are only a few feet away from active traffic lanes, and in many cases, motorists are not taking care to slow down in these zones.

Just how big an issue is speeding in construction zones?

In 2014, Police monitored Construction Zone speeds at several sites both manned and with photo radar. Below are some statistics for enforcement stats attributed to speeding in a construction zone both, with or without workers present.

Construction Zone
Workers present
No workers, speed reduction signs posted
Total Construction Zone Summonses

We may think that speeding in Construction Zones is a non-issue, but these numbers paint a different picture. When you see construction it is imperative, for your safety and the safety of others that you slow down.

Don’t forget: speeding fines are doubled in construction zones. The Government of Alberta also enacted increased speeding fines in construction zones, which now range from $156 to $949.

So, when you are out and about on the roads, pay attention and slow down when driving through construction zones or near a City or emergency vehicle. Our fellow employees work there. 

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