Two nights, two construction zones, one flagger killed and one seriously injured. The common factor – people are putting themselves on the line to protect travelers and employees in the work zone.
Just last night, at 9 p.m., a work zone flagger on OR 99W was hit and seriously injured eight miles south of Monmouth. The night before, a fatal crash occurred in another work zone on OR 11 in Umatilla County near Athena.
ODOT Director Matthew Garrett said, “We are tremendously saddened. My thoughts today are with our fallen and injured workers and their families. It is a sad reminder that safety should be our first priority on the road whether driving or working on it. Let’s make sure we all get home safe!”
Work on the OR 99W: Monmouth to Lewisburg paving preservation project was suspended for the night after the crash. The pavement had been ground down in preparation for paving before the crash occurred. Travelers in the area should expect rough roads today and travel carefully. Crews will return tonight with additional flaggers and message boards to remind people to slow down, pay complete attention and watch for crew members.
The project began July 15. Crews have been working five nights a week, 6:30 p.m. to 6 a.m. Sunday through Thursday. Flaggers and pilot cars are being used to control traffic. The work is scheduled to be completed in September.
Please travel safely in work zones
- Pay complete attention, especially in the transition zone before the work area. An inattentive driver is the most common cause of work zone crashes.
- Orange is your clue! Pay attention when you see orange signs, barrels, cones and barricades.
- Obey all speed signs, because speed may be reduced for your safety and the safety of workers.
- Remember, work zone traffic lanes often are narrow, without shoulders or emergency lanes.
- When possible, move over to give workers more room between them and your vehicle.
- Expect delays — plan for them and leave early so you can drive safely through the work zone.
- Know before you go! Call 511 or visit www.TripCheck.com to check routes, work zones and road and weather conditions before you head out.