In 2004, there were 265 collisions in Idaho work zones; 176 of those were in southwest Idaho, which includes the Boise area. Statewide, eight motorists died in work zone collisions and one construction worker was injured that same year. Nationwide, 1,068 people were killed in highway work zones.
Tips for driving in Idaho's highway work zones:
Motorists can increase their own safety and that of workers by following these tips for driving through road construction work zones:
- Slow down when entering a work zone and observe posted speed limits. Speeding in work zones can result in increased fines (the standard fine for speeding in Idaho is $53; the fine for a work zone speed violation is $82.50).
- Keep your distance. Leave extra room between your vehicle and the one ahead to allow for extra reaction time in case of a problem. Allow plenty of space for construction workers and vehicles.
- Watch for the orange. Orange highway signs and orange flags indicate a construction project ahead. Be prepared to merge or change lanes as directed by markers, signs or flaggers. Orange barrels and cones will help guide you safely through the zone.
- Minimize distractions. Give your full attention to driving through the work zone. This is not the time to talk on a cell phone or to change the radio station.
- Be patient. Highway construction projects may add a few minutes to the length of a trip, but those projects will improve highway conditions and promote safer driving for all motorists.
- Use seatbelts. Make sure everyone in your vehicle uses a seatbelt or child safety seat. Buckling up is the best defense against death or injury in the event of an accident.
- Plan ahead. For information about the state highway and interstate system, call 511 or visit 511.Idaho.gov. The service provides updates on road work activities that will impact traffic, weather information, emergency road closures and Idaho tourism information.