National Work Zone Awareness Week

Summer begins the peak season for road construction work across the U.S. Road work is a dangerous job. It often takes place at night with low visibility, and drivers are zooming past work sites, often in a hurry or distracted from the road.

In 2022, 891 people were killed in work zones, according to the NHTSA FARS data. Also in 2022, 94 highway worker occupational fatalities occurred in road construction sites, based on BLS data.

Delays and detours due to road construction can be inconvenient and frustrating. Still, it is everyone’s responsibility to share the road and be considerate. 

Since 2000, the National Highway Safety Administration and its partners have teamed up for National Work Zone Safety Awareness Week. The week is designed to highlight road construction zone safety and to encourage safe driving in construction zones. Each year hundreds of companies participate and utilize social media to spread awareness using hashtags like #NWZAW, #Orange4Safety and #WorkZoneSafety.

National Work Zone Safety Awareness Week is April 25-19, 2024, and the theme this year is “Work Zones are temporary. Actions behind the wheel last forever.” The goal of Work Zone Awareness Week is to educate drivers about the need to drive safely around road work zones.

The week kicks off with Work Zone Safety Training Day on Monday, April 15th. On that day, employers and workers are encouraged to pause periodically throughout the day for safety demonstrations, training, and talks about safety policies and prevention steps. National Go Orange Day is Wednesday, April 17th. THEA will proudly wear orange that day to show our support for work zone safety.

The best way for you to support work zone safety is to be aware. Pay attention to the road. Stay off of your phone. Be considerate of workers, other drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians. Obey the rules of the road and posted speed limits. Expect delays, plan your travel around them, and leave 10-15 minutes early to help you remain calm during increased traffic. 

When possible, take alternate routes to avoid work zones and keep a safe distance from the cars around you. Watch for sudden stops in traffic and move over for work crews and emergency vehicles. 

If we all take mindful steps to stay safe and alert on the road, we can make work zones safer for everyone.