SANTA FE ― Today, the New Mexico Department of Transportation released a video in coordination with National Work Zone Awareness Week to encourage motorists to be safe when driving through a work zone.
The video features Gov. Susana Martinez, NMDOT Secretary Tom Church, and Megan Rivera, who lost her husband in a work zone crash last year. It can be viewed here.
“Roadway workers put their lives on the line every single day and they do it to keep our families safe,” Martinez said. “Remember, as you travel through a work zone, have patience, drive the speed limit and put down the phone.”
“As the weather gets warmer, road work will begin to ramp up. Please use every precaution as you drive through a work zone,” NMDOT Secretary Tom Church said. “Remember, the lives of highway workers and other motorists are in your hands.”
Last year, two NMDOT employees, David Eggert and Anthony Rivera, were tragically killed in a work zone crash.
Between 2011 and 2015, there were 21 fatal crashes in work zones in New Mexico. During the same time period, there were just over 1,500 crashes that resulted in injury and almost 7,000 total crashes in work zones across the state. According to the Federal Highway Administration, in 2014 there were 669 work zone crash fatalities nationally.
“The Department has experienced first-hand the devastation that can occur in a work zone,” NMDOT Deputy Secretary Anthony Lujan said. “I urge everyone to please slow down and pay attention when driving through a work zone.”
When driving through a work zone remember:
- Reduce speed.
- Put down the cell phone.
- Seek an alternate route or leave early if there will be construction.
- Look for workers, construction equipment, bicyclists, pedestrians, and other motorists.
- Be Patient.
Last month, NMDOT, the Associated Contractors of New Mexico, and the state’s chapter of ATSSA brought the National Work Zone Memorial to New Mexico in order raise awareness and honor Eggert and Rivera whose names are included on the traveling memorial.