Highway work zones are dangerous places, as most drivers in Kentucky know. The lanes become narrow, and most times, the speed limit is reduced. Unfortunately, many drivers fail to follow this speed limit and increase their risk of causing an accident. According to a new study from the University of Missouri, drivers are especially at risk for a crash in these zones when they are distracted.
As part of their study, analysts took a look at naturalistic driving study data gathered by the Transportation Research Board. This data included the first-hand accounts of more than 3,000 drivers who were in a crash, and the accounts detailed how drivers interacted with the road and with their vehicle. In the end, analysts found that the risk for a crash or near-crash in a highway work zone increases 29 times when drivers are inattentive. Moreover, the duration of that inattention does not alter the risk. Drivers could be calling on the phone, eating and drinking, or talking with a passenger before they crash in a work zone.
The results of the study could prove to be useful for state transportation agencies and the Federal Highway Administration. These agencies could come up with “behavioral countermeasures” to reduce highway work zone crashes, such as better public education and bans on texting or all phone use.
Car accidents can lead to personal injury claims in Kentucky despite it being a no-fault state. Those who have been injured by another’s negligence and who want to know what their options are for moving forward may want to consult a lawyer. After the case evaluation, the lawyer may work to bring together proof against the defendant with the help of crash investigators and other third parties. The lawyer may then be able to negotiate for a fair settlement out of court.