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State safety officials preach caution when driving in work zones

Construction areas like I-84 are hotspots for accidents, especially during busier summer months
Published: Apr. 6, 2021 at 5:26 PM MDT
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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — Interstate 84 construction is in its second year and state safety officials are urging Magic Valley travelers to use caution and be wary of road signs when driving through work zones. Traffic and accidents are both trending up as nicer weather and more construction are on the horizon.

Memorial Day to Labor Day is known as the 100 deadliest days of summer. Data from AAA says accidents increase by 43% during these infamous summer days.

“It’s just a great time to remind drivers that as they are traveling in those summer months, again we see a lot of people traveling on the road because of recreation,” says Idaho Department of Transport’s Jessica Williams. “That’s also the time we have a lot of our construction projects in full swing throughout the state. So, we just want to encourage motorists to slow down and pay attention to signage in the area when they enter those work zones.”

Experts say the majority of accidents happen in areas that have speeds over 50 mph. Work zones on I-84 have posted speeds of 55 and 65 mph.

Sergeant Keith Thompson of Idaho State Police urges drivers to be extra alert in that stretch.

“(It’s important to make sure you’re) maintaining your lane. When you’re in that construction zone, be alert,” says Sgt. Thompson. “I know we have the no cell law but don’t be eating, don’t be looking around. It’s just a good time to concentrate on the road and what’s happening in front of you.”

Officials ask that you plan for any issues you may encounter during your summer drives, from construction delays and possible road hazards.

“So slow down,” says Williams, “follow signs that are in place and we’ll get you safely to your destination.”

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