Whether you’re a Road Warrior or just use your car for occasional errands, you are sure to run into road work zones while on the road. When you encounter those frustrating delays and traffic jams, it’s hard to remain calm especially if you have a schedule to meet. But driver impatience in a work zone setting can be most dangerous. In fact, according to a study by the Federal Highway Administration in 2014, work zone vehicle accidents claimed 669 lives and some 30,500 non-fatal injuries.
However, coping with work zone traffic can be managed. Doing so makes for a safer and less stressful environment for you and your fellow drivers as well as the highway workers who depend upon you to drive safely for their own protection.
If at all possible, you’ll want to avoid a road work zone; but if you must enter such an area, try to follow these safety tips:
- Don’t Get Distracted: Driving through a work zone requires you to keep your eyes and attention on the road – not on the work being done or the people doing it. Avoid multitasking. This is also not the time to be using your phone for calls, texting or photo-taking.
- Stay aware: Anticipate changes in traffic flow or pace. Be ready for unexpected lane changes, sudden stops, or workers entering the roadway.
- Avoid tailgating: Keeping up with traffic is advisable, but following too closely puts you at risk for a rear-end collision. This advice applies whether you are following another vehicle or road work equipment.
- Follow the signals of flaggers: Flaggers are in place to help assure that traffic moves around and through the work zone as efficiently and safely as possible.
- Obey the posted work zone speed limit: The FHWA warns that over 30% of fatal accidents in work zones result from excessive speed. Don’t be tempted to speed up just because you don’t see any work currently underway.
- Check traffic reports in advance: Before starting your trip, check for traffic delays. You can actually receive real-time traffic information by using one of several highly-accurate smartphone apps available.
- Allow extra time: If you anticipate a work zone delay along your route, then build in some additional time. You’ll be less stressed.
- If you can’t avoid, be patient: Remind yourself that the work being done will offer a better road when it is complete, and the workers are just doing their job. Try to do some stress-managing breathing while you wait.
Auto Insurance Tip
No matter how cautious you are when driving, there is always a chance for an accident on the road. Coping with the aftermath of a vehicle accident will be much less stressful if you know that you have the best auto insurance coverage for your circumstances. It’s advisable to check with your insurance agent to explore your insurance policy choices well in advance of needing to file an auto insurance claim.
We invite you to contact any of the experienced agents at Schaefer & Delauder Insurance either in Germantown or Frederick, MD to discuss your auto insurance needs. We can help you review your current insurance policy and explore your options to be sure you have the best coverage and protection to meet your needs.