Highway Work Zone Accidents in West Virginia
Helping you recover compensation after an accident
Roadway workers are placed at constant risk of injury. The job involves heavy machinery and dangerous equipment that can inflict catastrophic and fatal injuries if poorly designed, inadequately maintained or negligently operated. In addition, negligent drivers who speed, drive drunk or use their cell phones can cause serious job hazards. Ill-constructed roads also contribute to the dangers.
The Calwell Practice, LC focuses exclusively on injury recovery. Our lawyers advocate for workers’ rights to safety. Your employer and the drivers who travel by your work zone can take simple measures to avoid accidents. We hold them accountable if you are injured because of their actions or omissions.
Highway work zone injury statistics
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration reports that more than 20,000 workers are injured in road construction accidents every year. Numerous workers suffer serious or fatal personal injuries due to being:
- Run over or backed over by dump trucks or other heavy equipment
- Involved in collisions between work vehicles
- Caught in between construction equipment
- Struck by objects
- Hit by passing motorists
Lawsuits against negligent drivers
West Virginia Code §17C-3-4b makes speeding through a construction zone a criminal misdemeanor punishable by up to $200 and 20 days in jail. Drivers may be charged under this statute in addition to other charges, including DUI or reckless driving. However, criminal prosecution does not typically compensate injured victims. Our lawyers can file a personal injury lawsuit against the negligent drivers who contributed to your accident.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) published the report “Building Safer Highway Work Zones: Measures to Prevent Workers Injuries From Vehicles and Equipment” to instruct workers, employers, contractors and government agencies about improving work zone safety. Among their many recommendations, it urges employers to take these basic steps:
- Lay out work zone in accordance with the “Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices” and the project’s traffic control plans Create lateral buffer zone that protects workers from passing motorists
- Reroute or slow speed of motorists travelling through the work zone
- Use temporary traffic control devices — such as signs, warning systems and concrete barriers
- Employ flaggers to direct traffic and implement measures to protect flaggers from passing motorists
- Require workers to wear high-visibility apparel
- Illuminate work zone, especially at night or in inclement weather
- Maintain equipment in good condition and discontinue use of broken equipment until full repairs are made
- Train heavy equipment operators and ensure they have valid licenses and credentials
- Appropriately compensate workers for carefully performing equipment safety checks
- Supply safety tools and training to all workers on the site
Our Charleston lawyers assess if your employer followed regulations and implemented necessary measures to keep you safe from harm. We hold your negligent employer accountable for failure to comply with the law if you were injured at work.
Consult our team about West Virginia laws protecting highway construction crews
For more information about highway construction liability, call The Calwell Practice at 304.400.6558 or contact our law firm online to schedule an appointment.