Just last month, a Houston project engineer was fatally injured in a construction zone accident on Highway 290. He was struck by a loaded dump truck that was backing up. Sadly, hundreds of workers, drivers, and bystanders are critically injured and killed in Texas highway construction zones every year. According to the Texas Department of Transportation, work zone accidents have been on the rise in recent years. In 2014, over 19,000 crashes and accidents occurred in Texas roadway construction areas.
Safety Hazards for Construction Site Workers
Unsafe construction sites put workers at significant risk of injury and death. They are regularly exposed to dangerous equipment, toxic chemicals, and large moving vehicles. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) reports that nearly half of all construction site fatalities are the result of being hit by a vehicle or mobile equipment. The major causes of highway construction zone injuries are broken down as follows:
- Contact with objects, vehicles, equipment (35%)
- Slips, trips, or falls (20%)
- Overexertion (15%)
- Transportation mishaps (12%)
- Exposure to harmful substances or toxic environments (5%)
Texas has been ranked as the state with the highest number of worker deaths in construction zones. However, all workers are entitled to certain rights and protections against unsafe working environments. When you or a loved one suffers a highway construction accident injury while on the job, you may be able to seek compensation for damages. A knowledgeable Texas work-site accident lawyer can help you determine negligence, and pursue action against the liable party.
Safety Hazards for Drivers in Construction Zones
Construction zones can also be dangerous for motorists passing through. Construction areas often require detours, lane closures, and complex signs or barricades. These obstacles and distractions can increase the chance of getting into a car crash, especially a rear-end collision. Drivers should remain vigilant when going through a construction area on the highway, and take extra safety precautions such as:
- Slowing down, and following work-zone specific speed limits
- Paying attention to the presence of road maintenance workers, tractor-trailers, and heavy equipment
- Planning ahead to avoid road blocks and delays whenever possible
Unfortunately, highway construction accidents can happen to anyone, even the safest drivers. With one of the largest highway construction programs in the country, Texas maintains as many as 2,500 active work zones at any given time. There are at least 20 active highway construction sites along Interstate 35 alone. This puts many Texas workers and motorists at risk of highway construction accident injuries.
If you sustained a highway construction accident injury in the Houston area, the experienced personal injury team at The Krist Law Firm, P.C. is here to help. Our attorneys have decades of experience in handling construction site accidents and motor vehicle accidents. We have helped many victims recover damages for accident-related medical costs, loss of earning capacity, property damage, physical pain and mental anguish.
The Krist Law Firm, P.C. is 100 percent committed to supporting our clients in their time of need. We will work our hardest to recover the compensation that you deserve. Schedule a free consultation with a Houston construction site accident lawyer today by contacting us at (281) 283-8500.