One state agency has lost more workers in the line of duty than any other. The name might surprise you.
On April 9, Oklahoma City’s SkyDance Bridge over I-40 will glow orange in honor of the Oklahoma Department of Transportation’s 60 fallen highway workers. The department has lost more workers in the line of duty than any other state agency. Work zone safety remains a primary focus of the organization.
Oklahoma had 75 work zone fatality collisions between 2012 and 2016.
Four of the people killed were ODOT workers. The other 71 were drivers and passengers just like you.
Work Zone Fatalities
There were 242 collisions in Oklahoma highway work zones in 2016, resulting in 18 fatalities. This includes one ODOT worker who lost his life in May 2016. In the past five year, 1,658 people were injured in 1,308 collisions in Oklahoma. Nationwide, 765 people were killed, which is about an 8 percent increase from 2015 fatality numbers.
Work Zone Fatalities
The top three causes of work zone fatality collisions are speed, following too close and distracted driving.
SkyDance Bridge Will Glow Orange
The Oklahoma City SkyDance Bridge over Interstate 40 will glow orange on April 9, in honor of the Oklahoma Department of Transportation’s 60 fallen highway workers.
Partnering with ODOT as sponsors for the work zone safety awareness campaign are the Oklahoma Highway Safety Office, the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority and other associate partners.
Nationally, four out of five people killed in work zones are motorists or passengers in vehicles, indicating the way you drive in work zones has a direct effect on your own safety as well as the safety of highway workers. Your Life Matters: Drive Like It.
Work Zone Safety: Everybody's Responsibility
“Your Life Matters: Drive Like It” is a public awareness campaign that runs from April 2-May 2. This time frame includes National Work Zone Awareness week, which is April 9-13. This year’s national theme is “Work Zone Safety: Everybody’s Responsibility.”
Current Construction Projects
Stay safe while traveling. Check your route for potential ODOT work zones via the organization’s Current Construction Projects map.
Download ACOG’s presentation on Central Oklahoma’s 2018 Safety Targets and Trends by Kathryn Wenger, Program Coordinator, ACOG Transportation and Planning Services Division.
More PSAs from ODOT
Motorists are about 20 times more likely to die in work zone accidents than ODOT workers. We urge drivers to slow down and put away distractions, especially in work zones.
Dedicate your full attention to the roadway.
Set Aside Distractions
Avoid using mobile phones or changing radio stations while driving in the work zone. Focus on Safe Driving.
Safety belts save lives.
Don't Drink and Drive
Impairment is a danger to everyone using the highways.
Governor Mary Fallin and Oklahoma Secretary of Transportation Mike Patterson, along with Oklahoma Transportation Commissioners, kick off a safety campaign, Your Life Matters: Drive Like It, April 2.
Pay Close Attention
Merge when directed, and pay attention to all signs and work zone flaggers.
Turn on Your Headlights
Be visible to workers and other drivers.
Don't Speed or Tailgate
Note the posted speed limits in and around the work zone. Keep up with the traffic flow. Don’t change lanes in the work zone.
Expect delays and leave early so you can reach your destination on time. Be patient! Work zones aren’t there to inconvenience you; crews are working to improve the road to make your future drive better.