What Can I Do to Drive Safely in a Construction Zone?

Whether you are traveling home from work, taking your kids to school, or going on a road trip you are likely to encounter some form of construction. Road work can cause heavy delays in traffic, detours changing your route, as well as changes in the speed limit that can make for hairy driving situations. With all of these changes, road work can make your day to day commute much more stressful. As Utah car accident lawyers we have seen many accidents caused by road work, and we understand that it can be difficult to drive in. Which is why in this article we will be diving into what you can do to keep you and everyone else safe while driving through road work and construction zones, as well as what your next steps should be if you have been injured in an accident.

Safety Tips for Driving Through Construction Zones

Driving through a construction zone requires awareness and the ability to follow any changes or road signs. To help keep yourself safe through any road work, consider trying the following:

Stay Alert and Minimize Distractions:

Avoiding Distractions: Distracted driving is one of the most common causes for car accidents in America, in fact, in 2021 804,928 accidents were the result of distracted driving. It is important to note that distracted driving in a construction zone can be even more dangerous, as lanes can shift and speeds can change quickly. Make sure to keep your focus on the road at all times, and avoid distractions such as using your phone, eating, or adjusting your radio.

Watch for Signs: Construction zones are typically well marked with warning signs. If you are entering a construction zone be sure that you pay close attention to these signs. The road works signs in a construction zone will provide key information about lane changes, speed limits, as well as the presence of workers. To maintain your safety and the safety of all around you, be sure to follow what all of these signs say.

Follow Speed Limits:

Slow Down: Speed limits are changed in construction zones for a reason. When construction is underway the road can become much more hectic, and slowing down can help with this. Adjusting your speed to the listed speed limit will allow you more time to be able to react to unexpected changes in the road as well as greatly reduce the risk of getting into an accident.

Be Prepared for Sudden Stops: Traffic in construction zones can be incredibly hectic and can come to a halt unexpectedly. You can be prepared for this by providing yourself ample stopping room ahead of you. Try your best to maintain a safe following distance to help avoid any rear end accidents, you can practice the three second rule to keep yourself safe.

Merging Respectfully and Safely:

Merge When Directed: When a road is being merged into one lane it is crucial that you do not wait until the last moment to merge into the correct lane. Keep your eyes out for any signs about lane closing and merge early to help maintain a steady flow of traffic and reduce any bottlenecks.

Signal Your Intentions: Your turn signals are important to signifying your intentions in changing lanes as well as giving other drivers ample time to adapt to your turning and merging.

Zipper Merging: Nobody wants to be stuck in traffic, especially in a construction zone. To help combat traffic when streets have to merge into one lane of traffic try using the zipper merging technique. You can do this by letting one person in ahead of you and then continuing forward, acting like a zipper. This allows for traffic to move at a continuous rate while keeping everyone safe.

What Can I Do to Drive Safely in a Construction Zone?

Be Mindful of Workers and Equipment:

Watch for Workers: Construction workers may enter or be close to the roadway. Keep your eyes focused on the road and keep a safe distance from anyone who is entering the roadway to prevent injuries.

Avoid Heavy Machinery: Large trucks and construction equipment are common place in a work zone. These vehicles may enter or cross the roadway. If they do, make sure to stay clear of them and give these vehicles plenty of room to operate. 

Plan Your Route Ahead of Time:

Check for Construction Updates: Before you leave, consider opening up google maps or traffic reports and plan your route to avoid construction zones if possible.

Leave Early: If the route to where you are traveling is under construction it is important to plan ahead. Leaving earlier allows you ample time if there are serious delays in construction areas and will allow you to reach your destination safely.

What Should You Do If You are Injured?

If you were injured in an accident in a construction zone the next steps you take are crucial for a potential personal injury case. As your Utah car accident lawyers we understand it can be difficult to know what you should do next, so consider doing the following to protect your rights:

Seek Medical Attention Immediately: Your safety is more important than anything else after an accident. Even if you believe that your injuries are minor it is crucial that you seek medical attention immediately. A doctor will be able to give you a complete evaluation and may reveal injuries that you weren’t aware of due to the adrenaline you have after the accident. Medical treatment is also the foundation of your personal injury case, the medical records you receive will serve as the primary evidence in your potential personal injury case.

Report the Accident: After the accident occurs make sure that the police arrive at the scene. The police will be able to create an official report of the accident detailing who they believe to be at fault, as well as the contact information and insurance information of the other driver. This report is crucial for an injury case as it is one of the primary documents an insurance company will look through to determine fault.

Gather Evidence: Evidence is the lifeblood of your personal injury case. An insurance company will try to undervalue and undermine every aspect of your case, and having detailed evidence can help to combat this. If it is safe to do so, take as many photos and videos of the accident scene, including any relevant road signs, construction equipment, vehicles involved in the accident, as well as your injuries. Make sure that you also gather the contact information of anyone who witnessed the accident, these people can help corroborate your story and validate your injury claim. 

Consult With the Best Utah Car Accident Lawyers: Handling a personal injury case alone is an incredibly difficult task. This is where the best Utah car accident lawyers at LifeLaw Personal Injury come to play. Our attorneys want to make sure that you get the compensation you deserve, and that an insurance company does not take advantage of you. Our attorneys will take care of you through every step of the process, from starting a claim to settlement, we will be with you every step of the way. 

Driving through construction zones and road work can be stressful, but by following these safety tips you should be able to alleviate stress as well as your risk of getting into an accident. If you or someone you know does get injured, be sure to reach out to the best Utah car accident Lawyers at LifeLaw Personal Injury. Let our staff handle the complexities of your case while you focus on what is really important, your recovery. Give us a call today for a free consultation, and to discuss your options!