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LETTER: Help keep work zones safe by slowing down

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  • Digital Team 

Editor’s Note: The following is a letter to the editor by Brian Kelly, Regional Director, NYSDOT Region 6. If you have a submission for consideration, please send it to [email protected].

Here at the Department of Transportation, we often talk about our “crews” or our “team” because of the strong ties we have with one another. But what we really need to talk about right now is our “people.”

The people who you see along our highways, often dressed in a bright vest and hard hat, are people just like you. We’re at the grocery store together, the coffee shop together, our kids’ soccer games together, or even simply in the neighborhood together.

The communities you see us out working in are the same communities you live in. The bridges we’re fixing are the bridges we go over to drop our kids off at school; the roads we’re paving are the roads we use to get to the grocery store; the highways we’re rehabbing are the highways we take to visit family. That is why we are asking – even pleading – with motorists to drive safely when they see orange cones. We use the roadway for the same reasons you do, and we need your help to keep everyone safe. 

Here are just a few ways you can play a part to ensure that we both get home safely each day:

  • Slow Down in work zones – work zones may have slower speed limits than usual. 
  • Move Over as much as you can – To implement necessary enhancements, crews need to be in the roadway which puts them at greater risk of injury. Moving over as much as you safely can helps keep everyone safe.
  • Pay Attention – Districted driving is on the rise and puts both motorists and construction crews in danger. Put your phone down when driving – period. 

To be sure we all remain safe, we’ll be back out there with year two of our five-year Automated Work Zone Enforcement program. Last year, thousands of motorists were caught violating the speed limit in a construction zone, highlighting how important this program is out the community.

Our community is safe when our transportation network is safe, and that is what we are committed to ensuring for you and for ourselves – because our community is your community.

Brian Kelly
Regional Director, NYSDOT Region 6