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Dane County Executive, Sheriff, Highway Department Urge Caution in Work Zones

For more information contact:

Joshua Wescott, Office of the County Executive (608) 267-8823
Elise Shaffer, Dane County’s Sheriff’s Office (608) 284-6142

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 4/7/2008

Issued By: County Executive
View only releases from County Executive
The Federal Highway Administration has designated the week of April 7-11, 2008 as “Work Zone Safety Awareness Week.” The goal of the week is to remind motorists to slow down in work zones and be aware of the dangers highway workers face on the job.

“The long awaited arrival of spring means plenty of our hard-working men and women are out patching potholes and trying to make our roads safer,” County Executive Kathleen Falk said. “I hope drivers slow down and give them the room needed to finish that important work safely.”

Dane County Sheriff Dave Mahoney said deputies will be closely monitoring traffic in work zones next week and through the summer, watching out for drivers who fail to slow down or move over.

Wisconsin state law requires motorists to slow down and drive with due regard when they approach any emergency vehicles, tow trucks and/or highway maintenance vehicles that have their emergency or warning lights on. The so-called “Move Over Law” also states that motorists on multi-lane highways must move to the furthest lane away from where work is being done, if it can be done safely and without interfering with any other traffic. Fines for this violation are considerable, as much as $243.00, with 3 points against the license, and a suspension of the license if it involves an accident.

The Dane County Board of Supervisors will consider a resolution at its meeting on Thursday, April 10th in support of Work Zone Safety. In addition, the State Capitol dome will be lit in a ceremony on Tuesday, April 8 in honor of those who have lost their lives in roadway work zones.

Work zone fatalities have risen dramatically in the last few years. On average in Wisconsin, there are over 1,700 work zone accidents each year with 12 fatalities.

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