Orange promotes Work Zone Safety Awareness -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Orange promotes Work Zone Safety Awareness

By Jade Bulecza - bio | email

LOWNDES COUNTY, GA (WALB) –Hundreds of people die in crashes in highway construction zones each year.

That's why the Georgia Department of Transportation is using the color orange to remind you to drive safely through through road construction.

DOT and law officers were at a welcome center in Lowndes County Monday to educate motorists on National Work Zone Safety Awareness Week.

From crackers to cones, the color orange is being used to emphasize safe driving in construction zones on Georgia highways.

"The only protection you really have is between yourself and those vehicles is an 18 inch orange cone and that's the only thing that keeps them from coming in the work zone," said Daryl Jones, Georgia DOT Permit Inspector.

Jones has spent much of his 30-year career with DOT working on highways.

"I've been involved in a lot of major incidents such as disasters, having to close the interstates, wrecks, and fatalities throughout my career," said Jones.

From now until Friday, it's National Work Zone Safety Awareness Week.

This year's theme is "work zones deserve our undivided attention." Since 1973, 56 Georgia DOT workers have died on work sites.

The DOT says three out of four work zone fatalities are not workers.

"Most of the injuries in work zones come from the people that are driving the car or the people who are riding in the car," said Craig Solomon with the DOT.

DOT recommends planning an alternate route to avoid work zones if possible by dialing 5-1-1.

"If I see there is an accident that has traffic backed up I'll take another route," continued Solomon. "There's a lot of information. We have nine different prompts."

GSP, Public Safety, and Lowndes County deputies were also at the welcome center near mile marker three to remind drivers about the move over law.

"When you come into the work zone or if you see a law officer with his blue lights on you're suppose to either pull into the other lane or slow down to the point where you're able to stop," said Capt. Michael Weldon with the Lowndes County Sheriff's Office.

Law officers say to be mindful of zones and cones, obey the speed limit, and don't use a cell phone while driving.

Authorities also emphasized the super speeder law.

If you're driving 75 on a two lane road or 85 on a divided highway, you could get an extra $200 fee added onto your speeding ticket.

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