MDOT asks drivers to slow down to end road fatalities

Published: Oct. 1, 2020 at 5:59 PM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - Just days after a construction worker was hit and killed near Charlotte, the Michigan Department of Transportation is pleading with drivers to slow down.

The state says Jeremy Zeitz was one of 730 people killed in traffic accidents in Michigan this year alone. Seventeen months ago, former road worker Wayne McCarty had a frightening incident of his own.

“We had all of our signs put up you know slow down, construction ahead, cones. I was dressed in bright orange with a big stop sign,” said McCarty.

The next thing he remembers is waking up in a hospital with 28 broken bones and a collapsed lung.

“They told me that a lady had hit me going 50 miles an hour and I basically went flying, cartwheeled in the air,” said McCarty.

The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) says while there may be fewer cars on the roads, the number of road and work zone deaths are on the rise.

“If you’re looking at the lower amount of drivers on the road, it doesn’t really make sense,” said MDOT spokesperson Aaron Jenkins.

Jenkins says many drivers are ignoring the warning signs. In the last two weeks, two road workers were struck and killed.

Jenkins says it would help if drivers slow down, avoid distraction, and plan in advance so they don’t have to rush.

“Pay attention to the road. Pay attention to construction zones. We put our lives on the line working close to traffic like that and we need people to pay attention to where we are as well,” said McCarty.

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