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Construction workers speak out to keep work zones safe

POSTED: Tuesday, April 5, 2011 - 4:27pm
UPDATED: Friday, April 13, 2012 - 9:54am

WACO -- 108 Texans were killed in work zone accidents in 2010, and almost 10 of those were in Waco.

Now, the Texas Department of Transportation and construction workers in the area are speaking out.

Construction workers like Joe Robins say 80,000 pounds coming at you at 70 miles per hour is an every day reality for them.

"We got people buzzing by us 70, 80 miles an hour, and they are nose to nose with us," said Robins.

Tuesday, an actual office was set up right in the middle of Highway 84 to prove just how dangerous a construction worker's office is.

We were there to see how it felt.

Being in the middle of this construction zone was overwhelming. You have cars coming at you from every direction, separated by just cones, and you have to focus on what you're doing and what drivers are doing.

Construction zones have lots of warning signs, and workers wear bright colors to warn drivers.

However, Ken Roberts with the Texas Department of Public Safety says it doesn't always work.

"When the motorist is asked, how did you possibly run up in to our work zone? They say, I didn't see it," said Roberts. "that's because there's so many distractions in the vehicle."

Tuesday's speakers warn to put down cell phones down, and pay attention to the road.

These dangers are something Robins thinks about daily when he leaves his three children to go to work.

"This is where I come to work everyday, and I have to go home to my children. I mean, it's best for you to be more aware of your surroundings when you go through these works zones," said Robins.

Robins says it's tough on the highways, but someone has to do the work.

Now, construction workers in the area are honoring their fellow workers who were killed, and asking drivers to simply slow down.

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