Motorists urged to ‘take extra care’ near roadworks

Date posted: April 9, 2013

The Highways Agency is urging motorists to extra care around road works in order to prevent deaths and injuries among road users and road workers. Drivers are strongly encouraged to stay patient and obey speed limits around areas affected by roadworks.

 The report by the Highways Agency comes as a result of eight road workers having been killed in the last three years whilst on duty. There have also been many near misses, with motorists losing patience and driving through coned off areas or colliding with works vehicles.

As the number of roadworks is set to rise over the next two years in order to focus on road improvements to reduce congestions and boost road safety, drivers need to be aware that such changes are due to take place in many areas across the country.

The Highways Agency explains in its report, “While we will plan our roadworks to minimise disruption wherever possible, there is a large number of road workers, traffic officers, and other operatives working on live carriageways on England’s motorways and trunk roads, often just a few feet from vehicles travelling at high speed.”

Roads Minister Stephen Hammond said:

“It is absolutely essential that all road users play their part when driving through roadworks, and keep within the signed speed limit. Those few seconds you might save by travelling too fast could cost lives.”

Derek Turner, Director of Network Delivery and Development for the Highways Agency, said:

“Road workers do a difficult and dangerous job carrying out vital work to keep our roads safe and well-maintained. But they face danger every day while working close to fast moving traffic, in all weather conditions, and often at night.

“Speed limits, cones, and narrow lanes are there to keep road users safe, as well as provide a safe area for workers – often enabling us to keep roads open while essential work takes place. These measures smooth out the flow of traffic, give drivers more warning of hazards and reduce the risk of collisions involving road users and workers.”

Approaching roadworks

The Highways Agency urges all drivers approaching roadworks to:

  • Stick within the speed limit at all times and comply with all roadwork signs
  • Avoid switching lanes and get into the correct lane in good time
  • Concentrate on the road ahead
  • Keep an eye out for works traffic that may be leaving or entering roadworks
  • Be alert for road workers and give them plenty of space

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