Perhaps nobody is as familiar with the inherent danger of highway traffic than those workers who have to maintain our roads. There is often no way to do maintenance on busy roads such as the Pennsylvania Turnpike other than occasional lane closures, so that traffic can continue to get where it needs to go.

This means that maintenance workers are often in harm’s way, standing mere feet from cars and trucks whizzing by them at high speeds. It only takes a slight miscalculation on the part of a driver to lead to a fatal crash.

Sadly, this is exactly what happened over the weekend on a section of the Turnpike in Chester County. Turnpike Commission workers had closed the right lane in order to perform maintenance. However, for reasons that are not yet clear, a tractor-trailer entered the lane where workers were operating equipment.

Two of the workers were struck by the semi-truck; one of them, a 61-year-old equipment operator, died as a result of his injuries. The man who survived was a maintenance foreman for the Turnpike Commission; he was treated at a hospital but was released soon thereafter.

It is up to drivers on our roads to make sure that they are in control of their vehicles at all times, and that they obey signs directing them to avoid lanes or to slow down in construction zones. When people are negligent and end up injuring others as a result of this negligence, they ought to be held accountable for their actions.


Source: PennLive, “Worker killed in accident that shut down portion of Pennsylvania Turnpike,” Eric Veronikis, June 1, 2014