Safety for Road Workers


Work zones are dangerous for all of us.  That’s why, when behind the wheel, we have to be alert and use extreme caution when navigating through them.

Before Jim Piccola of the Department of Transportation and the rest of the crew head out to a work zone they all say the same thing to one another.

“To be safe.  Absolutely, just to be safe and to watch out all the time because you never know,” said Piccola.

Every day construction and maintenance forces risk their lives on the sides of our roads.  Piccola says the DOT takes all the precautions they can-warning motorists of work zones, slowing down traffic and putting up new road signs.  But there’s still a concern they fear.

“The DOT families I’m sure worry about their family members that are out there working but again we just try to make sure we do it as safe as possible and the biggest thing is we want the traveling public to get home and get to go where they want to go and for our workers to go home at night.”  

Piccola says planning ahead for a work zone is crucial and location criteria can vary.  Downtown, on a city street, speeds are a lot slower. On the Arterial, road signs are more spread out warning what’s ahead for drivers, giving you time to switch lanes or stop.  But one thing remains the same no matter where the location.

“Anytime we step out onto the road we always make sure we have our hard hats and vests on and make sure the workzone is set up properly.  And once that’s done, we feel a little safer, we are always out on the roadway and there is that danger of someone driving possibly under the influence, distracted driving but for the most part we feel pretty safe.”

Piccola urges drivers to slow down, be prepared to stop and follow the signs when in a work zone so everyone can make it back home when the workday is done.

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