UDOT urges motorists to slow down in work zones

Posted at 5:59 PM, Apr 12, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-12 19:59:48-04

DRAPER, Utah - Speeding cars continue to cause problems on Salt Lake City highways, often putting construction worker's lives in danger.

"It's extremely dangerous," said Steve Checketts, a highway manager for a construction contractor.​ "I tell my guys to use their eyes as their ears and to keep their heads on a swivel."

April 11-18 is National Work Zone Safety Awareness Week, and the message the Utah Department of Transportation is putting out is simply slow down.

"When you travel through a work zone at 50, 60, 80 mph, it's hard to see the eyes and the smiles of the workers," said Richard Thorn, President and CEO of Associated General Contractors.

"I think people just need to realize we all have families at home, and we want to get home safe to them," said Reggie Schlieper, Survey Manger.

In 2015, UDOT says more than 2,800 accidents occurred in Utah work zones, resulting in 10 deaths. Twenty-six percent of those accidents came as a result of speeding.

Speeding continues to be an issue on I-15 near Draper, where workers say the average speeds of cars reach 80 mph in a 55 mph zone.  That's just one project area.

UDOT is currently working on 150 projects state-wide.

"Please slow down. Please be safe," Thorn said.