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Construction Safety Matters

Important Safety Tips for Protecting Roadside Workers

When conducting road construction or repair work, it’s up to roadside workers to protect the public and themselves from dangerous accidents. Unfortunately, when a motorist is confused, distracted or driving recklessly, a roadside construction zone has the potential to become deadly.

To make roadwork safer – and protect road workers from on-the-job hazards they often face – the following tips and precautions are strongly recommended:

Plan Ahead

Traffic controls should be implemented prior to the start of the roadwork by driving through the proposed traffic pattern.

  • This dry run will allow you to make changes to the route so that it makes sense to motorists.
  • If you notice any obstacles or areas that may be confusing, change them before beginning the work.


  • Follow the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices provided from the U.S. Department of Transportation found here, and your local and state regulations regarding proper signage and barricading.
  • Place warning signs at least 1,000 feet before the start of the work zone.
  • Signs should be highly visible and in good working order.


  • Place space cones, barrels and other devices used to guide traffic close together throughout the construction site. Motorists should not be able to deviate from the path you feel is safest for them to travel.

Safety Gear

  • Wear hard hats, Day-Glo® or orange vests during the day and light-reflective strips at night.

Flagging Duties

At least one employee should act as the traffic control person.

  • Control traffic with a highly visible sign paddle during the daytime.
  • Flaggers should carry two-way radios to communicate with other employees.
  • Alert motorists of the presence of flaggers by placing signage at least 500 feet from the beginning of the work zone.

 Vehicle Specifications

  • All vehicles must have backing alarms, two-way radios and signs indicating “Slow Moving.”
  • All vehicle operators should be properly trained on how to operate the equipment.
  • Place cones around vehicles parked on the side of the road to warn motorists to slow down and watch out for them.

Take Extra Precautions at Night

  • Increase warning distances for signage.
  • Flaggers should use orange-cone flashlights to guide traffic.
  • Place flashing lights on barricades.
  • Tape off excavation site access.

VTC Insurance Group is committed to helping you protect your workers. To contact a VTC Insurance Group agent near you, give us a call, or visit vtcins.com.

The above content is for informational purposes only and is not intended as >medical or legal advice.


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