Workzone Awareness Week urges drivers to be safe around road workers


ABILENE, Texas - Thousands of Texas Department of Transportation employees work everyday to make Texas roads better and risk their lives to do it.

April 7-11 marks Work Zone Awareness week, a time to remember safety tips in work zones.

If you've driven past the Abilene TxDOT office, you may have noticed the 273 orange cones.

Each one represents a TxDOT worker who's lost their life in the line of duty since 1938.

Nine of those were from the Abilene district.

To keep that number from going up, Jill Collett, the TxDOT Traffic Safety Specialist, has a few reminders.

"We really want to encourage people to slow down and pay attention" said Collett.

And with all of the distractions outside the car, like uneven roads and signs telling you what to do, don't add to distractions inside your car.

"Put your phone down, don't tailgate, be patient," said Collett.

"Just remember that those are lives on the side of the road and drivers are going fast and you just need to pay attention and watch where you're going," she said.

Traffic fines also double in work zones when workers are present.

According to TxDOT, that means you could be facing fines up to $400 for moving violations.