Posted in: Safety,
by Gregg Laskoski on Dec 28, 2012 02:00 PM
If you're driving in Texas be extra careful on I-35.
I-35 is a major north-south artery through Texas that runs from Laredo at its southern end, all the way north to Duluth, Minnesota.
And if you're unfamiliar with I-35 it's important to beware of everything you might encounter there because the state of Texas is working overtime to improve it and they've got at least 20 separate 'work zones' set up on I-35 right now... so beware of speed limits that may apply to each one.
The Texas Department of Transportation calls the I-35 project one of its largest construction projects in department history – and it's expanding or improving more than 100 miles of I-35 across the state. At the same time it says that educating the public on the necessity of driving safely through work zones is a top priority.
"Interstate 35 is the Main Street of Texas serving as a major artery for not only motorists, but for the businesses that make our great state the economic powerhouse it is," said John Barton, TxDOT’s deputy executive director. "Unfortunately, the reality is we are beginning to see many crashes in work zones threatening our front line teams who risk their lives daily to keep Texas moving. To better protect them, we’re ramping up our educational efforts to encourage Texans to use extreme caution when driving through work zones."
Also at great risk are drivers. In 2011, there were 14,670 crashes in roadway construction and maintenance zones in Texas, resulting in 116 fatalities, the majority of which were motorists.
Currently, TxDOT has 20 active work zones along I-35 encompassing 109.6 miles from north to south Texas – the most the agency has ever had on the state’s main corridor. While these work zones indicate great progress for our state, they also call for enhanced enforcement from the Texas Department of Public Safety.
Texas Highway Patrol Major Casey Goetz advises that "Fines double when workers are present in construction zones. Motorists need to do their part and adjust their driving habits in work zones to help reduce the risk of crashes. Careless actions by a few end up costing everyone."
If you're in this part of Texas, please proceed with caution.