Construction Zone Accident Results in Tragic Death for North Dakota Father and Two Children
Why motorists need to drive with caution and obey traffic laws in work zones
On August 23, 2016, a father and his two children were killed in a construction zone accident on Highway 5 in Crosby, located in northwest North Dakota. The man’s 4-year-old son sustained serious injuries and was the sole survivor of the accident.
The North Dakota Highway Patrol reported that Lesley Gunderson from Noonan was driving eastbound on Highway 5 when the accident happened. He drove through a construction zone, followed the flagger’s direction and stopped his car, and was then rear-ended by a SUV. The driver of the SUV suffered minor injuries and the flagger was hit by debris but was not seriously hurt. The North Dakota Highway Patrol stated that the accident was still under investigation.
The Federal Highway Administration (FHA) reported that rear-end collisions are the most common types of crashes in construction zones and the most frequent fatalities are caused by motorists in work zone areas. This fatal accident in Crosby shows just how dangerous it is to drive through North Dakota construction zones. Despite the fact that Mr. Gunderson obeyed traffic laws, he and his two children tragically lost their lives as a result of a rear-end collision.
Almost 50,000 people are injured and 1,100 people die in work zone accidents each year, according to the National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP). The risk of work zone accidents increases by 20% when construction crews work on national highways during the peak summer season and 40% of construction zone crashes involve alcohol.
Not only do motorists cause accidents due to distracted and impaired driving, but the construction zone itself is hazardous. Driving around debris and heavy equipment puts drivers at risk for serious car accidents and injuries. Common road hazards include tire treads, rocks and debris that fall off trucks, and trash and construction materials.
Work zone accidents are often caused by the negligence of another driver who excessively speeds, doesn’t use proper passing lanes, and ignores traffic laws. Construction companies and their crews can also be found negligent for work zone accidents, especially if they leave equipment in the roadway or fail to post signs warning drivers of construction hazards.
When driving in construction zones, the FHA advises motorists to always turn on their headlights and be aware of their surroundings. Carefully watch the traffic and be an alert, defensive driver. Avoid distracted driving by not playing with the car radio, eating, drinking coffee, or talking on your mobile phone. In construction zones, not only can other motorists be hit and injured but it’s common for construction workers to be hit by cars and trucks and sustain serious injuries.
Healing from a car accident doesn’t happen overnight and you face a long, painful recovery process. When you are injured, you don’t have the energy to fight with insurance companies who don’t have your best interest at heart. We give your case personalized attention and are committed to getting you maximum remuneration for your injuries. To schedule your free legal consultation today, contact our construction zone accident attorneys at Larson Law Firm, P.C. Fill out our secure online form or call 701-484-HURT.