If you regularly drive in the Bay Area, there is a good chance that you have encountered road construction. In fact, California officials are tackling the largest road-improvement project in recent years. Still, if you are not careful, you may find yourself in the middle of a collision in a construction zone.
Car crashes in construction zones are likely more common than you think. Because a collision in a construction area may leave you with a catastrophic injury, you must do what you can to avoid one altogether. Here are four tips:
1. Respect the flagger
Construction companies often employ flaggers to direct the flow of traffic. You must remember that flagger signals supersede both speed limits and road signs. Furthermore, construction employees often have information that you do not. Therefore, you must always respect flagger instructions.
2. Watch for dislodged traffic cones
When repairing or building roadways, workers may use traffic cones for a variety of reasons. These cones, however, can become dislodged and fly into the roadway. This, in turn, may cause motorists to swerve into your driving lane. For that reason, you want to increase the distance between your car and the vehicle in front of it to give yourself additional time to react to road debris.
3. Expect a rough ride
Construction workers may need to redirect traffic, tear up parts of the road or add new surfaces. Each can make for a bumpy ride. Unfortunately, a distracted or inexperienced driver may not be able to maintain control over his or her vehicle. Therefore, you should keep a firm grip on the steering wheel and be ready to react to unpredictable surfaces.
4. Decrease your speed
Finally, decreasing your speed is one of the more effective ways to avoid a car crash in a construction area. While you cannot control how fast other motorists drive, you can commit to driving at a safe speed until you clear the construction zone.
Even though construction zones can be hazardous for motorists, you do not need to avoid them altogether. With a bit of caution and some defensive driving, you can increase your chances of passing through the area without sustaining a serious injury in an automobile collision.