In Florida, construction work can occur all year round because of the nice weather. Still, many construction projects occur during summer months. Drivers on the roads need to be aware of the risks construction zones can present.
Motorists face risks of accidents that could cause injury when drivers do not safely navigate through construction zones. Construction workers can also be hurt in a construction site accident. While a construction worker cannot sue an employer for an injury on-the-job, a roadside construction worker could potentially make a claim for damages against a negligent driver with the help of a car accident lawyer.
Florida One of the Most Dangerous States for Road Construction Accidents
Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports Florida is one of the most dangerous states when it comes to fatalities on construction sites. In 2012, Florida, Texas, and California were the three most dangerous states for motorist deaths in roadway maintenance or construction zones; there were more than 50 motorist deaths in each state.
Nationwide, the number of deaths in construction areas has fluctuated significantly over the years, as construction rates have risen and fallen based on economic conditions and infrastructure spending. CDC data shows:
- An average of 778 annual motorist deaths between 1994 and 1999 in construction and maintenance works zones.
- An average of 1,060 fatalities per year in construction and work zones from 2000 to 2006. The number of construction area fatalities among motorists peaked in 2003, with 1,095 fatalities among motorists in construction areas.
- An average of 669 annual motorist deaths in construction and maintenance zones from 2007 through 2012.
There were also high numbers of work fatalities in construction zones over the years, especially in Florida. Florida had the second highest number of workers killed on road construction sites from 2003 to 2013, with only Texas losing more workers.
In 2013 alone, there were 105 worker fatalities nationwide on roadway construction sites. Sixty-six percent of the deaths of construction workers on roadways happened in transportation collisions, and in 69 percent of these types of accidents the worker was hit by a car as a pedestrian.
Nationwide, from 2003 to 2007, 639 of the 8,103 deaths in the construction industry happened while workers were performing road construction and almost half of the workers killed were struck by a vehicle.
Construction workers, highway maintenance workers, tractor trailer works, supervisors of road construction, excavation workers, and construction equipment operators suffered the majority of fatalities in work zones (63 percent).
Drivers need to know they are endangering other motorists as well as highway workers if they make careless choices when moving through construction zones. Drivers have an obligation to obey lower speed limits in construction zones as part of an effort to reduce the chances of a motor vehicle accident occurring.
Drivers should also pay careful attention, should follow road signs directing them where to go, and should avoid distractions like phones or map when going through construction zones. If drivers exercise more care and take precautions to try to avoid accidents, hopefully fewer motorists and fewer construction workers will die in preventable accidents.