SPOKANE COUNTY, Wash --- Work zone crashes are a problem in Washington State with more than 1,600 collisions in work zones reported in 2015.
In 2015, there were nine fatalities, 17 serious injuries and more than 500 minor injuries that resulted from work zone collisions statewide, reported the Washington State Department of Transportation. The new slogan for these areas is "Give 'em a Brake."
WSDOT said the top three causes of work zone crashes are distracted driving, following too close and speeding.
“Our people work just inches away from high speed traffic, and they have families," WSDOT spokesperson Al Gilson said. "They want to go home just like everyone else."
When you see the orange signs on the road, the WSDOT said drivers should slow down to the posted speed, pay attention, merge as soon as possible and expect delays. In 96 percent of accidents in work zones, the people injured or killed are drivers or passengers, not road side workers, said the WSDOT.
“It's all about paying attention. No matter what the weather no matter what the time of day,” said Gilson.
Summer is a busy time for road construction and travel so be sure to help the workers and “Give ’em a brake.”