Highway construction season is officially underway here in West Virginia. State Transportation Secretary Paul Mattox stressed the need for safety on the roads during a news conference at the state Capitol Friday.

“We really need people to focus, slow down and pay attention to what they’re doing,” said Mattox.

This spring and summer the DOH has about $500 million worth of road construction planned. That means thousands of construction workers will be doing the dangerous job of working on the roads while traffic zooms by.

One of the DOH slogans they want drivers to remember is this: “Zero Fatalities: Saving One Life at a Time.”

Mattox says all too often distracted driving in construction zones leads to accidents.

“We had two fatalities occur in our work zones last year and that’s two too many. Our goal is zero,” Mattox said.

There will be plenty of signage on the roads to tell you when you’re coming up on a construction zone. Then there’s the orange cones and barrels to give you another reminder. But maybe the most effective tool is the State Troopers stationed at major construction zones with lights flashing.

If you are caught speeding or driving recklessly through a construction zone and you are pulled over by police, you’re looking at a fine that’s doubled.

Mattox says the best advice is to put down your cell phone, place both hands on the wheel, slow down and be aware of your surroundings when making your way through construction zones.

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Comments

  • a thought

    WV needs an across the board flagger certification like MD the state road is one of the biggest offenders with improper signage few road cones and along with that the work zone set ups are wrong, and most times with one person halfway flagging. Flagging is dangerous and needs to be done in a safe way for the traffic flow to understand and leave no doubt when the sign is there so will be workers.....

  • WVIRGINIAN FOR LIFE

    Yes, but they will let law enforcement families and friends go just like they do all over this state. Above the law!

  • Tim C

    Maybe we could catch a few more criminals if have our state troopers weren't sitting in construction zones. I hear they're paid overtime for it.

  • DWL

    Mattox is the poorest excuse for a leader that exists, short of the governor. Interstate 81 in Berkeley County is a DEATH TRAP and these 2 yahoos in Charleston could care less. The 5-mile long construction zone is a concrete bobsled track with 5-7 accidents daily in the stretch daily, and these two political buffoons couldn’t find the eastern panhandle with a blind man’s cane. ZERO tolerance? The voters of this state should have ZERO tolerance for their lies!!!!! After all, they appointed Rick Wachtel to the Aeronautical Commission and that moron is running all the state’s airports into the ground the same as he has done to MRB. They can’t even afford a flag to fly there.

    • WVIRGINIAN FOR LIFE

      OMG, your post is right on target. The construction in the Eastern Panhandle has gone for three years plus on I-81. It's ridiculous!!! As for Wachtel, he's an idiot with no credentials. He runs a small time AM radio station for crying out loud. That's his skills in a nutshell.

  • mike dineen

    Yes I always see the cones, miles of them but never see anyone working

    • WVIRGINIAN FOR LIFE

      Isn't that the truth! They award contracts to cronies who then sub them out to firms who can't do the job. Thus a construction project in WV takes sometimes two three times longer than in any adjacent state. I've seen this over and over.