6 Tips for Driving Trucks Safely in Road Construction Zones
Be Prepared — Expect Delays
Before you start on your route, take a quick look online to see if there are any construction zones in your path. You may be able to find highway agency-provided detours as well. Not all work zones will have information online, though. So, plan ahead and stay safe.
If you’re going 60 and you pass a sign that says “Road Work 1,500 feet,” you’ll be there in 17 seconds. So, if you can see a work zone far ahead of you, start slowing down or make plans to slow down very soon, because you’ll be there before you know it.
Rear-end collision is the most common type of crash in a highway work zone. Leave seven seconds of braking distance between you and the vehicle in front of you. Rear-end accidents usually occur because of a close following and traveling too fast for conditions. Keep a safe distance between your vehicle and traffic barriers, construction equipment, as well as construction workers.
Construction zones are a pain but you have to be at peace with the fact that they are for the greater good. There is no use getting road rage over every car trying to get in front of you or the drainingly slow speed.
Obey Posted Signs
Work zones such as line painting, road patching, and mowing are constantly moving down the road as the work is finished. Just because you don’t see workers and a bunch of equipment immediately after seeing the warning sign, doesn’t mean they’re not there.
Flashing arrows or “lane closed ahead” means you need to merge as soon as safely possible. Don’t try to barge in at the last second, it’s dangerous and will make lots of people angry. “Take 10” means putting on your turn signal at least three seconds before starting a lane change and using at least seven seconds to complete the lane change. Be sure to look at your mirrors throughout.